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Few who have not attempted the task of writing the lives of 
those belonging to a former generation, will be able to appre- 
ciate the difficulty of collecting the materials for such a work, 
and it cannot fail to be a mournful reflection to those still 
living, to find how speedily all records of the career, even of 
the men who were distinguished in their day, pass away from 
the memories of their successors. In the case of David Cox, 
however, the office of the biographer is one of comparative 
ease, for devoted friends and admirers of his art have recorded 
many of the circumstances relating to his personal history and 
experiences, and his memoirs have been already written on 
several previous occasions at considerable length. The diffi- 
culty, indeed, has rather been to give proper scale to the 
various occurrences, since we hear much more of the last few 
years of his hfe, when the details were fresh in the memories 
of his friends, than we do concerning those early days when 
he was struggling to make his way in his art, and when his 
ultimate success had still to be achieved. This is perhaps always 
the case with biographical work undertaken by acquaintances 
within a few years after the artist's death, as the period within 
our own knowledge and experience is so much more readily 
described than the bygone days, for an account of which we 
must rely upon mere hearsay and the recollections of relatives. 
It is on this account that any scrap of autobiography becomes 

7,0 \ 



SO valuable, and even, in the absence of better material, the 
letters and correspondence of him of whom we have to treat 
may furnish most useful hints. 

No one who examines the art of Cox, so characteristic and 
so thoroughly independent, can doubt that he was a genius 
and a man of a high intellectual type, but he was at the same 
time a most simple-minded and modest individual ; plain and 
homely in his exterior, known to the artists of the day as " Old 
Farmer Cox " ; kind and sincere in his friendships, of a most 
sociable and cheerful disposition, and contented through life 
with the most humble surroundings. Such was the man as he 
appears to one who knows him only through the writings of 
others, and the glimpses afforded by his own letters and cor- 
respondence. It is this aspect of his character that I have 
endeavoured to portray, and I have sought to describe his 
art from examples readily accessible to the student, and from 
works preserved in our public galleries. 

It is less than thirty years ago that my father was instru- 
mental in the foundation of a National Collection of Water- 
Colour Drawings at South Kensington. In this attempt to 
illustrate a truly English art, he was greatly aided by the 
advice and liberality of private connoisseurs, among them being 
Mr. William Smith, Mrs. Ellison, and others. In the Collec- 
tion thus formed Cox is fairly well represented, and by the kind 
permission of the Lords of the Committee of Council on Educa- 
tion, I have been allowed to select several of these drawings 
for reproduction in this work. I must also express here my 
indebtedness to Mr. Whitworth Wallis, F.S.A., and to the 
Museum and School of Art Committee of the Corporation of 
Birmingham, who graciously acceded to my request to repro- 
duce certain of the oil-pictures by David Cox, forming part of 
the munificent bequest of the late Mr. Joseph H. Nettlefold to 



his native town. Permission was likewise most kindly 
accorded to me to photograph some fine examples of the art of 
Cox and of De Wint from the choice collection of Mr. James 
Orrock, to whom I would here acknowledge my obligations. 

Turning to the other artist whose career I have endeavoured 
to trace — Peter De Wint — I am here confronted with certain of 
the difficulties to which I have already alluded, namely, the 
scantiness of the material extant upon which to found a 
biography. It is true that his widow, shortly after his death, 
prepared a hrief memoir of De Wint, which Miss Tatlock, his 
grand-daughter, has kindly allowed me to consult, and I have 
also had the advantage of perusing Mr. Walter Armstrong's 
memoir, and from both of these sources I have derived many 
interesting details. I have been able to learn but little, however, 
of De Wint's early life, and many circumstances relating to his 
career have to be inferred rather than founded upon documentary 

De Wint and Cox were alike in one respect — in their 
genuine love of Nature and of English landscape scenery ; but 
they saw Nature very differently, and interpreted her varied 
phases each for himself. There is no doubt greater power and 
individuality in the art of Cox; more sympathy with the 
commoner aspect of a sunny English landscape, or that view 
of it which most men can realise, in the work of De Wint. 
Each artist formed a style of his own : that of De Wint being 
neither realistic nor ideal; that of Cox, without having the 
appearance thereof, being mannered in the extreme. 

I have thought it best to write of De Wint as the life-long 
friend of Hilton, an artist who was never rightly understood, 
and as a sturdy and devoted admirer of English scenery, which 
he has taught many to love and to appreciate. It must be 
remembered that, when Cox and De Wint began to paint, the 



beauties of England were, comparatively speaking, unknown. 
Landscapes to be approved had to be " classic " and founded 
upon rule. The early water-colour painters despised these 
precepts ; they went at once to Nature and painted the land- 
scape as they found it, and for this alone we owe" them a deep 
debt of gratitude. 

De Wint is seen at his best in the South Kensington 
Galleries, and from these collections I have been allowed to 
choose several admirable illustrations of his art. As an oil 
painter he is but little known ; though he was possessed of 
undoubted powers in this medium also, as his works at South 
Kensington will testify. The " Henderson Bequest " to the 
National Gallery contains some valuable drawings by De Wint, 
which are rarely seen in the badly-lighted Gallery to which 
they have been consigned ; let us hope that a day is near at 
hand when more justice will be done to our earlier English 
painters than they have hitherto obtained at the hands of their 

Even as I write, a wonderful collection of the works of David 
Cox, probably the most comprehensive series of his oil pictures 
and drawings ever brought together in one gallery, is on view 
at Birmingham. The appreciation bestowed upon the art of 
Cox and of De Wint gains, rather than loses, as time 
progresses. I can only hope that by making their merits 
known to a wider circle of readers I may aid, however 
humbly, in adding to reputations which time can never dim. 

G. R. R. 


November, 1890. 



List of Illustrations to David Cox 
List of Illustrations to Peter de Wint 





Chapter I.— Early Life-First Visit to London— First Visit to 
"Wales— Marriage (1808) 

Chapter II.-Teacher at Military College-Publishes Drawing 
Lessons— Life at Hereford— Excursions to Yorkshire— Life at 

Chapter III.— Begins Oil-painting— Goes to reside at Harborne— 
Character of his Art— Bettws-y-Coed 

Chapter IV.-Visit to Wales-Life at Harborne- " The Welsh 

Funeral "—Visit from his son 3^ 

Chapter V. -Visit to Edinburgh-His portrait painted by Sir John 

Watson Gordon-His death and burial (i8S9)-Exhibition of 1862 43 

Chapter VI.-Drawings at the South Kensington Museum-Bir- 
mingham Art Gallery-Mr. Nettlefold's bequest ... 50 


Chapter I.-His ancestors-His father-His birth (1784)- Appren- 
ticed to John Raphael Smith— Friendship with Wilham Hilton- 
Harriet Hilton 59 

Chapter H.-Is made an Associate of the Society of Painters in 

Water Colours-His marriage (i8io)-Character of his drawings 69 



Chapter III.— Comparison of his work with Constable's— His 
method of painting— Price of his work— The Henderson Bequest 
of his drawings to the National Gallery— His works at the South 
Kensington Museum 

Chapter IV.— The Hiltons— Hilton and Haydon— De Wint's 
social life— Visit to Devonshire— Marriage of his daughter to 
Mr. Tatlock— Death of De Wint (1849)— Monument erected by 
his widowiin Lincoln Cathedral— Sale of his drawings at Christie's 
— Exhibition of his works in Vokins's gallery . . . . 



Exhibited in the Gallery of the Society of Painters in Water Colours 102 
In the South Kensington Museum ..... . 108 

Oil Paintings in the Birmingham Art Gallery 


In the Exhibitions of the Society of Painters in Water Colours 

In the National Gallery 

In the South Kensington Museum • ■ . . . 



Appendix.— Letter from the Rev. Alfred J. Capel, of Hereford . nj 






Portrait of David Cox. By Sir John Watson 
Gordon, R.A., P.R.S.A Frontispiece 

Belonging to the Cmmcil of the Midland Institute. 
Crossing the Sands from Market ... 3, 

In the possession of James Orrock, Esq. 
Water-Mill in North Wales .... 9 

In the South Kensington Musetwi. 
The Shrimpers . . . . • . 16 

In the Birmingham Art Gallery. 

Haymaking . . . . • • • -19 

In the South Kensington Museum. 
Tending Sheep, Bettws-y-Coed . . -27 

In the Birmingham Art Gallery. 
Going to the Plough 35 

In the possession of James Orrock, Esq. 
Changing Pastures ...... 41 

In the Birmingham Art Gallery. 
Going to the Hayfield ..... 49 

In the Birmingham Art Gallery. 
The Skirts of the Forest 53 

In the Birmingham Art Gallery. 




Lincoln Minster. .... opposite 

In the South Ke7isington Miiseum. 
Aysgarth Force, Yorkshire. 

In the possession of James Orrock, Esq. 
Hay Harvest ..... 

In the South Kensington Museicm. 
Nottingham ..... 

In the South Kensington Museum. 
Landoc Bridge, Wales. 

In the possession of James Orrock, Esq. 
Stonebow, Lincoln .... 

In the South Kensington Museum. 
Cricketers ...... 

In the South Kensington Museum. 
Cows in Water ..... 

In the possession of James Orrock^ Esq. 
Richmond Hill ..... 

Fj'om the Engraving iii " Thames Scenery^' by 
W. B. Cooke. 




Inscription of Plate facing page 83 : for Strongbow, read Stonebo« 





Lincoln Minster. . . . . opposite 59 

In the South Kensbigton Museum. 
Aysgarth Force, Yorkshire. . ... 65 

In the possession of James Or rock, Esq. 
Hay Harvest . . . . . . .71 

In the South Kensington Musem7i. 
Nottingham ....... 76 

In the South Kensinston Museum. 

the Orrock Collection. 



Few artists of modern times have found more appreciative and 
more zealous biographers than David Cox, the subject of this 
brief memoir. It is true it was not until some years after his 
death, which occurred in 1859, that the first sketch of his 
career was published by the author's relatives in their Century 
of Painters of the English School ; but shortly afterwards Mr. 
N. Neal Solly, of Edgbaston, gave us the chatty and abun- 
dantly illustrated biography of the painter, which was issued in 
1873 ; and this was followed eight years later by the able and 

B 2 



discriminating memoir of Cox, written by Mr. William Hall, 
a most intimate acquaintance and companion of the artist, and 
one well qualified for the task he had undertaken of doing 
justice to the genius of his friend. These publications have been 
consulted and have furnished materials for several subsequent 
essays on the career and works of David Cox, among which we 
may mention Mr, F. Wedmore's account of this artist in the 
GentletncDis Magazine, of March, 1878, and Mr. Monkhouse's 
memoir which appeared originally in the Portfolio, and has 
been republished with additions in his recent volume entitled, 
The Earlier English Wafer-Colour Painters, To each and all 
of these writers we must, at the outset, express our obligations 
for much of the information we have here brought into small 
compass for the assistance and convenience of the art student. 

Concerning the birth and parentage of David Cox, there is 
little to record that can have an interest for those who would 
study the details of his artistic career. His father was a man 
of scant education, a whitesmith, as distinguished from a shoer 
of horses or " blacksmith," whose forge, situated at Deritend, 
a suburb of Birmingham, has long ago disappeared to make 
way for modern improvements. In fact, the whole of Heath 
Mill Lane where it stood, with the exception of the Old Crown 
Inn, a half-timbered structure, dating back to the middle of 
the sixteenth century, has been removed to permit of the con- 
struction of the railway. Joseph Cox, the father of the artist, 
was twice married : by his first wife, Frances Walford, he had 
two children, the elder Mary Ann, a girl, and the younger, a 
son, born on April 29th, 1783, the subject of this memoir. 

At that time even, as is still the case, Birmingham was 
the seat of a thriving metal industry, and the forges of the 
smiths were scattered all over the district, then, no doubt, 
sparsely inhabited. Joseph Cox was a skilled forger of gun- 



barrels, bayonets, and various implements in iron and steel, 
but he also made horses' shoes, since we learn that his son, 
many years later, when on a journey discovered a horse-shoe 
bearing his father's stamp. The elder Cox was in the habit 
of putting his mark on his productions, and when David first 
came to London he frequently entered into conversation with 
sentrymen and soldiers in order to find a pretext to examine 
their weapons and to see if they bore the stamp of his father. 

Frances Walford, the smith's first wife, was a woman of 
superior education to her husband ; she was the daughter of a 
well-to-do farmer and miller, who gave his name to the mill he 
had built himself on Gravelly Hill, on the left-hand side of 
Holloway Head as you go up from St. Martin's Church. The 
mother of Cox had, moreover, a fund of strong common-sense, 
and she was possessed of a deep religious feeling which she 
instilled into the mind of her son ; and there can be no doubt 
that her precepts and example, and the careful training which 
she was able to impart to him, served to guide him aright in 
the difficulties and dangers to which the vocation he adopted 
at his entrance into life peculiarly exposed him. 

He appears to have been a delicate and somewhat sickly 
child, always rather shy and sensitive, and his first schooling 
was obtained at a day-school in the vicinity of his home. He 
subsequently attended for a short term the Birmingham Free 

One evening, going home in the dusk, he had the misfortune 
to stumble over a scraper and broke his leg. This happened 
in the early years of his school life. During the time that he 
was laid up from the effects of this accident, a cousin whose 
name was AUport, and whose father seems to have been a 
general painter, gave the little invalid a colour-box, which 
proved a great source of delight to him. He painted designs 



on the kites of his school-fellows, and produced coloured copies 
of prints, which were sold to neighbours and friends. 

Finding that he was clearly not strong enough to follow his 
father's vocation, at which he worked for a time, and that he 
had a marked inclination for art, he was sent to take lessons in 
drawing at a school kept by Mr. Joseph V. Barber, senior, 
who taught at the Grammar School, and whose sons in later 
hfe became the companions of Cox. Here he made good 
progress and devoted himself diligently to his work. He seems 
to have shown at all times a great love for drawing, and he did 
all he attempted to do thoroughly. Before he was sixteen he 
was apprenticed by his father to Mr. Fieldler, a locket-painter 
and a maker of devices for snulT-boxes and trinkets. 

The jewellery trade, of which this was a branch, was intro- 
duced into the Birmingham district by Mr. J. Taylor about 
1755, and it has subsequently taken so large an extension as 
to render the town almost as much noted for this industry as 
for its earlier work in iron and other metals. Cox had not 
been long engaged at the factory when one morning his master, 
who was missing, was found by the lad hanging dead at the 
top of the stairs, having in a fit of despondency committed 
suicide. This discovery gave a great shock to young Cox, and 
the death of his employer forced him to seek for some other 
occupation. During the eighteen months of his apprentice- 
ship he had, however, learned enough of his business to paint 
a miniature portrait with much skill, as is shown by a locket 
still in the possession of his family, a photograph of which will 
be found in Mr. Solly's book. 

He does not appear to have been long without work, for his 
cousin, the same who had provided him with the colour-box, 
obtained for him a situation at the Birmingham theatre, of which 
the elder Macready, the father of the famous tragedian, was at 



that time the manager. Macready had secured the services of 
a foreign artist of note, M. De Maria, to produce his scenery, 
and David Cox's duties, Hke those of his eminent predecessor, 
Claude, were to grind the colours, clean the palettes, and assist 
the painters in their work. De Maria, who had previously been 
painting scenery for the Italian Opera in London, was an artist 
of considerable ability, and his works had a great effect on the 
youthful colour-grinder, and stimulated Cox to become a land- 
scape painter. 

We have no records of the after events in the career of De 
Maria, but we learn from the biographers of Cox that many 
years later, in the Gallery of the Water Colour Society, they met 
once more, when Cox had gained his ambition, and had become 
a painter. Seeing a gentleman gazing intently on one of his 
landscapes. Cox recognised his former master, and made him- 
self known to him. The meeting must have been a pleasant 
surprise to both of them, and De Maria is reported to have 
said: "What! are you the David Cox, the painter of this 
picture, the boy who used to grind my paints at Birmingham? " 
On the artist modestly answering that he had much to thank 
him for, De Maria said, " I have now to learn a great deal 
from your There can be no doubt that to the largeness of 
handling, and the ready dash of the scene-painter, Cox owed 
much, and we know how greatly David Roberts and Stanfield 
profited by their work for the stage. 

The authors of the Century of Painters say in their life of 
Cox : " Of scenic art more than any other art, the essential 
object is to please the eye, to make effective points tell, and to 
express the intended effect with facility and ease. It may be 
presumed that young Cox, during the four years he remained at 
Birmingham as scene-painter, laid the foundation of those very 
qualities which are so characteristic of his works, and which. 



added to his refined sense of the colouring of landscape, of 
the eifects of air and the fresh atmosphere of English scenery, 
make his pictures such favourites with all who love Art." 

It is on record that when in later life, some forty years after- 
wards, Cox was staying with a friend at Sevenoaks, and enjoying 
the splendid panorama spread before his eyes, he described 
with enthusiasm the scenes painted by De Maria, especially a 
wooded landscape, and after a detailed account of its effect 
and breadth, he added earnestly how very much he should like 
to see it again. 

While engaged for several years in the most humble capacity 
at the Birmingham Theatre, Cox found means to profit in his 
art, and we learn that De Maria, perceiving his ability, set him 
to paint side-scenes and encouraged him to improve himself. 
Moreover, Macready having become aware of his skill, employed 
him to copy on his own account a set of scenes for the Sheffield 
Theatre. In course of time De Maria resigned his appoint- 
ment, and Cox took his place and prepared scenery for 
Birmingham. Though his work was thus utiHsed, his name was 
not put on the bills ; and on one occasion when a new play 
was being produced with scenery painted by Cox, he found to 
his mortification that the artist was described as the famous 
Mr. Daubeney of London. Our artist, who was much mortified 
to find his handiwork thus assigned to another, begged 
Macready to give him the credit of his own performance, 
whereupon the manager flew into a rage, and is reported to 
have told him to "go and be hanged!" "Who was heV 
" Did he suppose his name would draw the public ? " 

Cox, however, did not for some time give up his employment 
at Birmingham, and his ultimate determination to do so would 
seem to have been caused mainly by his desire to comply with 
the wishes of his parents, who feared that his moral character 



might be injured by his surroundings. He had made many 
friends among the players, and the son of Macready, who was 
then a boy at Rugby School, had a toy theatre for which Cox 
painted the requisite scenery. One of the scenes represented 
a flock of sheep being driven to market, and this was so 
arranged on two rollers as to present the appearance, when the 
handle was turned, of an interminable procession. 

During the time that Cox remained with the Birmingham 
actors, frequent moves were made from one town to another, 
and this unsettled life was very distasteful to him. He was 
often compelled to put up with very poor quarters while on his 
travels ; and on one occasion he was much annoyed at being set 
to watch at an inn, where he and some of the actors had been 
lodging, while one of the company cut sufficient meat off the 
joint to take away in paper for dinner. From time to time, 
on an emergency, he took a minor part, and he even on one 
occasion played pantaloon; but Cox was no actor, and the 
life of a strolling player did not suit him, so he resolved 
at length to throw up his engagement and to seek for some 
other work in London. 

His choice of London was due to an invitation he received 
from the proprietor of Astley's Circus, who, visiting Birming- 
ham about this time, saw what Cox could do as a scene-painter, 
and offered him work at Lambeth. At first Macready refused 
to cancel his articles, and it was not until Cox's mother joined 
her entreaties to Mrs. Macready to her son's importunities 
that he was at length released. 

Cox came to London in the summer of 1804, when about 
2 1 years of age, and shortly afterwards he secured work in the 
scene-loft at Astley's Theatre. He obtained lodgings at the 
house of a widow lady of the name of Ragg, living in a small 
street not far from the Elephant and Castle at the back of the 



theatre ; and it would appear that his mother, who came with 
him to London to see him settled, chose these quarters for her 
son and commended him to the widow's care. Though 
engaged in painting at Astley's, he does not seem to have 
worked for that theatre ; he found the painters there were fully- 
occupied, and he was perhaps too modest to seek to intrude. 
He, however, painted scenery for the Surrey and other theatres, 
and according to Mr. Solly some of the scenery he produced 
in Lambeth was painted in the open air, in the yard of a 
carpenter and jobbing builder of the name of Hills, who was 
a relative of the Raggs. 

All the time that Cox remained in London he worked 
steadily at landscape painting, and he was ever an early riser 
and a most industrious sketcher from Nature. Two of his 
Birmingham friends, Charles Barber and R. Evans, came up 
to town, and the three studied together, the younger men 
being helped and encouraged by Cox. The landscapes he 
painted about this time were disposed of for trifling sums to 
printsellers and picture-dealers, and the remuneration, small as 
it was, that Cox received for his drawings sufficed for his 
modest requirements, eked out by a little teaching and an 
occasional commission. 

It must have been about this period that he finally relin- 
quished scene-painting and betook himself solely to painting 
in water-colours. Probably the last stage scenery painted by 
David Cox was that for the theatre at Wolverhampton, A 
bill for this work is still preserved, and the price he received 
seems barely sufficient to pay for the canvas and paints. The 
following is a copy of the account : — 

1808. Mr. Stretton to David Cox, Dr. 

Feb. \^th. To painting 310 yards of scenery at 4^. 

per square yard .... £(i2 o o 



In order to dispose of his sketches and partly also, as we 
read, for the purpose of study, Cox was a frequent visitor to 
the shops of the dealers, and he greatly admired the works of 
Varley, Havell, and Glover. Some of their drawings he 
copied for self-improvement, and he resolved to take some 
lessons from John Varley, who at that time lived at No. i6, 
Broad Street, Golden Square. David Cox often said later in 
his career how much he rejoiced that he had come to this 
decision. He took several lessons in water-colours, for which 
he was to pay at the rate of ten shillings each ; but, after he 
had had a few lessons, Varley, addressing his pupil, said, 
" I hear you are an artist, Mr. Cox." " No, sir," he replied, 
" I am only trying to become one." " Well," said Varley, 
" however that may be, I shall be happy to give you any 
advice or assistance in my power, and I hope you will come 
here and see me draw as often as you please, but I cannot 
take any more of your money." 

In 1805 Cox made his first sketching tour to Wales, being 
accompanied thither by his friend Charles Barber. He went 
through the wildest parts of Merioneth and Carnarvonshire, 
and made many sketches. His works at this period were 
very slight, some being only in outline or lightly tinted in 
Indian ink. On subsequent journeys, Mr. Solly tells us, he 
carried with him indigo, gamboge, purple-lake and sepia, 
dissolved in bottles, and some of the sketches then made are 
broad and effective. His key of colouring was, as a rule, low 
in tone, and showed very strongly the influence of Varley 
and other masters of the older school. His prices for the 
drawings he produced about this time were curiously small. 
His regular charge for landscapes in Indian ink or sepia was 
two guineas per dozen; these were chiefly purchased by 
country drawing-masters as " copies " for their pupils. 



Among the brother-artists of Cox, with whom he was at this 
period on friendly terms, we may mention Samuel Prout, who 
had not as yet made his mark upon the quaint architecture of 
Normandy and Brittany. Both were then struggling for a 
bare livelihood, and by mutual consent they agreed to dispose 
of their works at the shops of different dealers, so as not to 
spoil the market. 

Mr. Hall, in his memoir, tells us that Cox greatly admired 
a landscape by Poussin, and was permitted to copy it under 
many difficulties. This was accomplished at the shop of a 
dealer of the name of Simpson, who resided in Greek Street, 
Soho, and who allowed Cox to come to his house for the 
purpose. The copy he made is still preserved in a private 
collection at Brixton Hill. In order to improve himself in 
composition he purchased early in his career a set of etchings 
from pictures by Poussin, Claude, and Salvator Rosa; these 
he found very suggestive, and he used frequently to refer to 
them in after-life. 

He was fond of visiting the open spaces round London, and 
the wharves on the banks of the Thames, and these furnished 
him with many of the subjects for his pictures of this date. 

He visited from time to time the well-known shop of Falser, 
the dealer, then living in the Westminster Bridge Road, in 
order to dispose of some of his sketches, and it was through 
the instrumentality of this connection that Cox subsequently 
made the acquaintance of Col. the Hon. H. Windsor, after- 
wards Earl of Plymouth, who became one of his earhest patrons. 

In the year 1808 Cox married Mary Ragg, the elder 
daughter of his landlady; she made him an excellent and 
devoted wife, and, though some twelve years his senior, she 
appears to have been extremely well suited to him, as she 
entered into his artistic pursuits and helped and encouraged 



him in his work. The younger sister of Mrs. Cox married 
a Mr. Gardiner, an agent for the sale of Government maps, 
and a good friend to the painter. 

After his marriage Cox moved to the outskirts of London, 
and took a small cottage at the corner of Dulwich Common, 
then a very retired and out-of-the-way neighbourhood. Here 
their only child, David, was born in 1809, and here Cox lived 
a quiet rural life, painting the scenery in the vicinity and 
working up the materials acquired during his Welsh tours. It 
was in this retreat that he was discovered one Sunday morning 
by Colonel Windsor, who had admired some of his sketches at 
Palser's, and wished to take lessons from him. The Colonel 
was told by the dealer, who at first hesitated to give him the 
required information, that Cox lived a long way out of town ; 
but the Colonel, finding that his retreat was at Dulwich, a 
place he passed on his way to London from Beckenham, 
where he resided, sought him out and arranged with him for 
lessons. Better than this, he introduced him to several other 
pupils, among whom were Lady Gordon, Miss Eden, and 
Lady Arden. Cox at first charged five shillings per lesson, 
but under the advice of Col. Windsor's mother he raised his 
terms to ten shillings, the amount generally' obtained by 
fashionable teachers. 

During nearly every year of his residence at Dulwich, Cox 
paid a visit to his parents at Birmingham, who at that time 
resided in Hill Street, near the corner of Swallow Street. 
While staying in that neighbourhood he sketched and gave 
lessons. In the spring of 181 2 he went with his wife and 
child to Hastings, and found much to interest him in its 
coast-scenery and fishermen. This was his first chance of 
studying the sea, and he made many sketches of the effects he 
witnessed. He took lodgings near his friend Havell, and they 


worked together. It would seem that while at Hastings, Cox 
painted a little in oil, as there are many oil-sketches on mill- 
board produced about this period. Havell also attempted the 
new medium. They worked early and late, and Mr. Solly tells 
us that on one occasion Cox got up and painted a sunrise, and 
then woke Havell by flinging pebbles at his window, in order to 
announce the fact that he had already completed a sketch 
before his friend was out of bed. 

Gradually Cox applied himself to larger and more ambitious 
works, and availed himself of one of the London galleries for 
their display. The Society of Painters in Water-Colours had 
held their first Annual Exhibition in 1805, and their venture at 
the outset met with considerable success. Their doors were, 
however, not opened to outsiders, and the rising school of 
water-colour painters found scant hospitality at the Royal 
Academy. An attempt was therefore made in 1808 to found 
another society, under the presidency of Mr. W. Wood. This 
body took for its title the "Associated Artists in Water- 
Colours," and under its auspices an exhibition was opened in 
Lower Brook Street in rooms which had formerly been 
occupied by the older society. Among the members were 
Bone, Alfred Chalon, Villiers, Laporte, Westall and others, 
and Cox sent many of his drawings to their gallery. 

It is much to be regretted that the records of this Association 
are extremely scanty ; indeed the history of these early efforts 
to found a water-colour society has still to be written. The 
undertaking met with little public support, and if Mr. Solly's 
information is correct, the works of the members at the last of 
the exhibitions were seized for rent by the owners of the Gallery. 
Among the principal sufferers was poor Cox, who could ill 
afford to have his contributions thus impounded. The works 
were shortly afterwards disposed of, and with them was one of 


the largest drawings Cox had hitherto attempted, a " View of 
Windsor Castle," 4 feet X 3 feet. This was purchased by 
Mr. J. Allnut, and a curious fact connected with this work 
is that when in 186 1 the collection of Mr. Allnut was being 
prepared by his executors for sale at Christie's, two other 
drawings by Cox were found beneath it, attached to the 
same sketching-board. De Wint's fine picture of "The 
Cricketers," now at South Kensington, was found in a very 
similar way by Mr. Vokins underneath another sketch. 

In the Birmingham Art Gallery: Nettle/old Bequest. 


The original Water-Colour Society was broken up in 1813, 
and was shortly afterwards reconstituted by the efforts of Glover,' 
Barret and others, and at this time Cox was elected a member. 
The scope of the exhibition, which had previously been confined 
to works in water-colours by the members, was henceforth, mainly 
at the instigation of Glover, considerably altered. Paintings in 
oil and the works of outsiders were admitted, the title being 
changed to that of the " Society of Painters in Oil and Water- 
Colours." Cox, not apparently daunted by previous ill-luck 
loyally contributed to the exhibitions, though it is clear that 
his drawings did not at this date find much favour with 
connoisseurs. He sent seventeen works to the New Gallery in 
1813, and thirteen in 1814, and with the exception of the years 


1815 and 1817 he contributed regularly to the displays of the 
Society for a period of no less than forty-six years. 

Though there is reason to fear that for his larger and more 
laboured productions the artist at this time found little demand, 
he appears to have been steadily engaged in teaching. His 
friends and patrons moreover were persons of position and 
influence, and when in 18 14 a teacher of landscape drawing 
was required for the senior officers at the Military College 
near Farnham, Cox had sufficient influence to obtain the 
appointment. In order to discharge his duties he took up his 
residence at the College, where his friend, Andrew Wilson, was 
already installed as the drawing-master to the junior officers. 
Cox received the complimentary title of " Captain," and had a 
servant assigned to him. His pupils comprised many men 
who afterwards became eminent in the service, and while the 
ability of their teacher was fully recognised, it soon became 
apparent that the kind of art in which he excelled was not that 
needed by the young officers. 

He found the restraint imposed by his military duties 
extremely irksome, and the work was utterly un suited to his 
disposition. No wonder, then, that the appointment was 
speedily relinquished, and that at the end of the first term Cox 
returned to London, after a very few months' absence, and had 
to seek for some other employment, for he had given up his 
Dulwich cottage, and his wife had gone to stay with her mother . 
He soon heard of something likely to suit him at Hereford, to 
which a chance sight of an advertisement in the Times directed 
his attention. A drawing-master was required for a ladies' school, 
kept by Miss Croucher, the salary off"ered was £100 a year, and 
permission was accorded to the teacher to give private lessons in 
his spare time. Cox applied for the post, and succeeded in obtain- 
ing it. He had to give lessons twice a week at the school, and 




would have much leisure time for sketching. His wife was always 
delicate, and he may have taken into consideration the benefit 
she was likely to derive from the change. Doubtless also the 
knowledge of the beauty of the scenery of the Wye would have 
weight with him ; living would be cheap, and he would obtain 
excellent schooling for his boy at the well-known Grammar 
School. The fixed salary, though small, would render him less 
dependent upon the precarious sale of his drawings, and there 
can be no doubt that he was well advised in taking this step. 
He had to borrow ;£40 from Lady Arden to defray the 
expenses of the journey and the removal, and he was soon 
able to engage a cottage whither he transferred his wife and 

He found in the picturesque old city and its surroundings 
countless subjects for his pencil, and the years he passed in 
Hereford were rich in progress in his art. He sent many 
drawings to the London exhibitions, and paid an annual visit 
to the metropolis to see the exhibitions and to keep himself 
in touch with his brother painters. 

Cox reached Hereford towards the close of 1814, and at first 
rented a rather dilapidated cottage, more than two miles away 
from the town. It had been originally tenanted by a small 
farmer or a gamekeeper, and it was from all accounts a dull 
and dreary place in which to spend a winter. 

In the following spring the artist removed into a better house 
nearer the city, and here he remained until 181 7, when he 
made another move to a cottage on Ailstone Hill, where he 
built himself a painting-room and made various alterations to 
render the house more convenient for his purpose. He lived 
in this little house for five-and-a-half years, in fact, until he was 
able to carry out a pet project and to build a house of his own. 
This house he completed, on a plot of ground he had previously 


purchased, towards the end of 1824. He called it Ash Tree 

Durmg the earlier part of his residence in Hereford, Cox 
was busied in the production of soft-ground etchings from his 
own drawings for the illustration of a work on landscape art. 
This book, entitled A T^-eatise on Landscape Painting and 
Effect in Water Colours, was published by Messrs. S. & J. 
Fuller, of Vere Street, Rathbone Place, in 18 14. It had been 
in progress for upwards of two years, as some of the plates are 
dated 181 2. There are twenty-five pages of etchings and 
thirty-two of aquatints. The designs are simply and effectively 
rendered, mostly in outline with a little bold shading, and are 
well adapted for teaching purposes. They are indeed intended 
as examples of composition and of effects of light and shade. 
He made many other designs for Messrs. Fuller, as is proved 
by entries in his memorandum book recorded by Mr. Solly 
during the period from 1814 to 1820. Some of these etchings 
were no doubt intended to serve as copies, others were views 
in Bath, and some may have been the illustrations for a later 
work by Cox entitled The Young Artist'' s Companion or Draw- 
ing Book. This work contains forty pages of etchings and 
twenty-four pages of aquatints, some of the latter being 
coloured. This seems to have been first issued in 1825, 
though many of these books were republished at different 
dates. The price he received for the etched copper-plates 
was three guineas each, and later in 1818, for the views in Bath, 
four guineas each. He appears also about this time to have 
made some sepia drawings for the purpose of book illustrations, 
for which he received about x\ guineas each. Later in life 
Cox supplied part of the illustrations for Roscoe's Wanderings 
and Excursio7is i?i North Wales, and subsequently also some 
of those for the Wanderings in South Wales by the same 

c 2 



author. Engravings from some of his works were pubHshed in 
the Art Journal, and for the Art Union of London Mr. E. 
Radclyfife suppHed, in 1862 and 1863, a series of twelve 
beautiful line engravings from drawings by D. Cox. 

Cox did not, while he resided at Hereford, confine himself 
to teaching at Miss Croucher's school, he gave lessons also at 
the school of Miss Poole, and taught the boys at the Grammar 
School. For this latter engagement he received the modest 
stipend of six guineas per annum. He did not secure many 
private pupils, but he went as far afield as Leominster to give 

Shortly after he came to Hereford he made a sketching tour 
along the valley of the Wye as far as Chepstow, visiting Ross, 
Monmouth, and Tintern, and some of his drawings of these 
places were exhibited in London in 181 6. In the following 
year he sent nothing to the Exhibition, partly because he was 
too busy with his teaching, and partly on account of a serious 
illness by which he was laid up for some time. 

While he lived at Hereford, Cox was in the habit of taking 
boarders to whom he taught drawing and painting. From the 
entries in his notebook it appears that he was paid either J^']o 
or seventy guineas per annum for board, lodging, and instruc- 
tion. Mr. Solly records the names of several of these pupils, 
only one of whom seems to have made a name in art. A 
favourite sketching ground with- the painter was in the Llug 
Meadows, in which he made many drawings. In fact he was 
always partial to certain spots, and he seems to have been 
able to paint many pictures from the varied aspects of a single 
landscape. We read that many of his most beautiful works 
at his favourite Bettws-y-Coed were produced in one field. 

Cox frequently, in the summer months, made sketching ex- 
cursions into Wales, North Devon, and other picturesque parts 



of the kingdom, and on these occasions he was ahiiost always 
accompanied by some artist-friend. He did not like to be 
alone, and a journey he took in 1819 was often referred to as 
a very dull one because he was without a companion. 

On his annual expeditions to London he always passed 
through Birmingham, to spend a few days with his parents, 
who still lived in Hill Street. He also stayed with friends to 
whom he gave lessons, and several of the Birmingham dealers 
were willing to purchase his drawings, the prices of which, 
even at this time, were extremely moderate. Thus we read in 
Mr. Solly's book, that in 18 17 he received from Mr. Everitt, a 
Birmingham dealer, from four shillings to seven shillings each for 
drawings in Indian ink. In the following year he sold some 
of his works to Messrs. S. & J. Fuller, of London, at the 
prices quoted : — - 

£ s. d. 

Feb. 18. One drawing, Berry Pomeroy . .150 
One ditto, View below Gravesend .150 
Four ditto, \Zs. each . . . .3120 
Twenty-one ditto, Zs. each . . .880 

During his stay in Hereford his wife engaged a young 
servant, who remained with the family as long as Cox lived, 
becoming the housekeeper after the death of Mrs. Cox in 1845. 
The name of this servant was Ann Fowler, and his biographers 
make frequent mention of her devoted attachment to the 
artist and to the members of his family. During the final year 
of his residence at Hereford, Cox paid his first visit to the 
continent; he took his son with him and accompanied by 
his biother-in-law, Mr. Gardiner, started by coach for Dover. 
This was in the early part of 1826. The party crossed by boat 
to Calais, and travelled via Dunkerque and Bruges to Brussels, 
where Mr. Gardiner had a business engagement. They saw 
all the sights, including the field of Waterloo, Cox making 



many sketches of the city and of the market-people in their 
quaint dresses. By a fortunate chance our artist found that 
some Herefordshire friends were staying in Brussels, and he 
needed but little pressing to accept a seat in their travelling 
carriage to Ghent and Antwerp, and thence through Holland. 
During this trip Cox made numerous sketches, chiefly in pencil, 
as the time pressed, but he afterwards worked up his notes into 
pictures which were exhibited at the Water-Colour Society's 

After his return from abroad in the autumn of the same year, 
he found a purchaser for the house he had built for himself, 
and carried out an intention he had long formed of settling in 
London. No doubt he felt he was rather too far away from 
the artistic world, and he thought his son, destined to become 
an artist, would have more chance of success in the metropolis. 
He sold Ash Tree House to a retired West Indian planter for 
nearly a thousand pounds, and in the spring of 1827 took up 
his residence on Kennington Common, at 9 Foxley Road. 
Cox may have also been influenced in this move by the desire 
of Mrs. Cox to see more of her family. Her health, never very 
good, improved after her return to London, and she was again 
able to take long walks and to see her relatives. 

Mr. Hall tells an amusing story of the sale of the Hereford 
cottage. Mr. Reynolds, the purchaser, who had made his 
fortune at Berbice, had, when the transaction was being com- 
pleted, a few shillings to receive from Cox, who searched his 
pockets to find the necessary coins, when the new owner ex- 
claimed, " Never mind the change, Mr. Cox ! you can give me 
five or six of your little drawings for the balance ! " and Cox 
assured his friends that he really meant this — such was the low 
value which the retired planter set on works of art ! 

The return to London, after nearly thirteen years of quiet 


country life, is sometimes spoken of as the date of a new epoch 
in the art of David Cox ; but this was scarcely the case, as his 
work at that period underwent little change. The true dividing 
point in the history of his art must be placed many years later 
when he began to practise as an oil painter, after his retirement, 
to Harborne. Nevertheless, there was about this time a change 
of subject, if not a change of manner. He began to paint from 
his continental sketches, and he gave us works manifesting a 
wider range of experience and instinct with new charms. He 
betook himself at once with characteristic energy to teaching. 
He sought out some of his former patrons, and found many 
new ones. His services were greatly in request, and he was 
soon able to raise his terms, and to charge a guinea a lesson. 

Even at this time he was so careless of his work as to make 
a practice of allowing the pupils to keep the drawing he had 
executed before them. He did not abandon this, according to 
Mr. Solly, until shortly after 1832. He had now no longer a 
difficulty in selling his works. Money was more abundant than 
it was in the stormy times of 1814, and his drawings began to 
be appreciated. Still there were those who could not under- 
stand his rugged and blurred landscapes, and who preferred the 
smoothness or finish of the stippled work of his contemporaries. 
Indeed, a lady is reported to have said to him on one occasion, 
" Pray, Mr. Cox, do you not think it would be worth while to 
take a few lessons from Mr. in finish ? " 

All this while Cox was a most industrious contributor to the 
Water-Colour Exhibition. In 1827 he sent seventeen drawings, 
mainly from Welsh scenery. In the following year he contri- 
buted twenty-six works, and in 1829 there were no less than 
thirty-five drawings by him in the gallery in Pall Mall, several 
of the latter works being from places on the continent — Calais, 
Brussels, etc. 



He had profited much from his former visit to the Low- 
Countries, and he determined to see more of the continent, and 
therefore, in the summer of 1829, he planned a lengthened 
tour in France, accompanied by his son. He travelled via 
Calais to Paris, and there availed himself of the guidance of 
1 ohn Pye, the engraver, who had been long resident in France, 
in seeing the sights of the city. Cox had the misfortune, very 
early in his stay there, to sprain his ankle, and he thus was 
prevented from getting about on foot, and could not sketch 
as much as he would have liked. Still, he managed to make 
many drawings during the six weeks he was away, though he 
had to give up his intended tour along the banks of the Loire. 
He made yet another visit to the continent a year or two later, 
in 1832, and on that occasion spent most of his time at 
Boulogne and Dieppe, but he was only absent from England 
for a week. 

He admired the scenery of Belgium and Holland, but he was 
not favourably impressed with the parts of France he visited, 
and in later life he never expressed a wish to return to the 
continent. Indeed, when anyone showed him continental views 
he would exclaim, "Oh ! that's foreign," which expression, we 
learn, became a by-word with him. Mr. Solly tells us that a 
gentleman who had travelled much abroad, tried^ to persuade 
Cox's son to go to Switzerland to paint, saying iflS^as so much 
superior to anything at home. Cox listened quietly, and at the 
end of the conversation he remarked, "Don't try to induce 
David to go on the continent in search of scenery. Wales, 
Yorkshire, and Derbyshire have been good enough for me, and 
I quite believe they may yet do for him." 

Throughout the whole of the fourteen years he remained 
in London, Cox devoted a month or two each summer to some 
country excursion. In this way he visited Yorkshire in 1830, 



and spent some time in the neighbourhood of Bolton Abbey 
and in the picturesque valley of the Wharfe. This country he 
admired greatly, and he often returned to paint there, and made 
many drawings from Bolton Abbey. In the year following he 
stayed for some time at that renowned artistic haunt, the 
' Peacock ' at Rowsley, that dear old stone-built hostelry where 
so many artists have spent happy days, within a short walk of 
Haddon and the pleasant valley of Darleydale. Cox formed a 
strong attachment for the place and went there again and 
again ; he was very fond of the worthy people who kept the 
' Peacock,' Mr. and Mrs. Severn. He mentions them often, 
and he says in a letter, quoted by Mr. Solly, that " Haddon 
alone is quite enough for one summer." He loved with the 
love of an artist and of a poet the old terrace with its broad 
flight of grey stone steps, and balustrades, and its yew-tree 
walk; he greatly admired also the interior, the antique tapes- 
tries, panellings and carvings ; the quaint old hall had not 
at that time been done so much to death l^y painters as it 
is now. 

During these years he went more than once to the Lake 
Country, but he does not seem to have been so much im- 
pressed with its beauty as with that of some other places he 
frequented. His visit to Lancaster in 1834 is noteworthy for 
the production of some fine drawings of the broad expanse 
of Ulverston Sands. One of the charming pictures founded 
on this subject, from the collection of Mr. James Orrock, forms 
the headpiece to Chapter I, The train of country people 
receding from the spectator across the wide stretch of barren 
sand, serves to indicate vividly the expanse traversed, and the 
drifting sand and rolling masses of cloud constitute in the hands 
of Cox all that he needs for a grand rendering of nature. Cox 
delighted in these sandy tracts and handled such subjects with 



amazing skill. The placid serenity of the English Lakes, 
nestling amid the hills, does not seem to have tempted his 
pencil, but some of his most effective landscapes are based on 
the grand cloud-filled skies and the yellow sweep of a vast 
tract of sand. This latter he knew well how to enliven with 
groups of market-folk and flocks of sea-birds. 

In the early months of 1838 Cox spent some weeks at 
Seabrook near Hythe, whither he had gone in the hope of 
benefiting his wife's health. He made many sketches of the 
coast scenery in the vicinity, and he paid a visit to Dover, where 
he painted the pier ; later on in the year he again spent some 
weeks at Haddon and Hardwicke. 

The last few years of his life in London found Cox more 
and more in request as a teacher, and his works, which he 
sold at very low prices, were largely sought after by the 
dealers. The more important drawings he contributed to the 
exhibitions in ever increasing numbers do not, however, appear 
to have met with a very ready sale. He sent thirty-four works 
in 1836 to the Gallery of the Water-Colour Society, twenty- 
five in 1837, and thirty-two in 1838. His prices were still 
extremely moderate. For seven drawings sold in 1837 six 
guineas was, with one exception, the highest sum he received ; 
but one picture was purchased for what was, in those days, 
the unusual amount of thirty-five guineas. 

It was his practice, as we find by his letters, to remain in 
London until after the close of the exhibition, in order to pack 
and send off the pictures he had disposed of in the gallery to 
the various purchasers. This kept him in town until near the 
end of July. He then arranged a tour in some of the districts 
he desired to paint, accompanied by certain of his Birmingham 
or London friends : he rarely, as has previously been stated, 
made a journey alone, Mr. Roberts, an amateur of much 



ability, and a Birmingham manufacturer, was his frequent com- 
panion, and has preserved many letters about these summer 
outings. He invariably, in passing through Birmingham to 
his sketching grounds, paid a visit to one or other of the group 
of friends to whom he had there endeared himself, comprising 
Mr. Everitt, Mr. C. Birch, and Mr. William Radclyfife, the 
engraver, who has most felicitously reproduced certain of his 


No one can read the faithful account of his hfe left us by 
Mr. Hall without being aware that Cox felt his incessant en- 
gagements as a teacher of drawing extremely irksome, and pro- 
bably during his last few years in London this distaste for teach- 
ing grew upon him. In fact, but for the influence of his wife, 
who had sometimes literally to take him to the houses at which 
he had engaged to give lessons, he would have declined teaching 
altogether. His great aim at this time was to make suitable 
provision for the old age of himself and those dear to him, and 
when he found his son growing up and able and willing to 
undertake teaching and to keep up the connection he had 
formed, the desire to break loose from this drudgery became 

But there was yet another motive which induced him to seek 
for change ; he was turning to the study of oil painting. Was 
he, perhaps, conscious of his own powers, thinking of possible 
Academy honours? There is no hint of this in any life of him 
we have consulted ; but it is strange, in reading the memoirs of 
eminent members of the Water Colour Society, to find how 
many of them in the zenith of their fome hungered after the 
mastery of another medium, and turned aside for awhile from 
their favourite studies to practise with unfamiliar materials. 

Cox, who did all he attempted to do thoroughly, no sooner 
resolved to work in oil than he set about to procure lessons 



from a competent teacher, as he had done in those early days 
when he forsook scenic art to become a landscape painter. 

His choice fell upon William Miiller, one of the most power- 
ful colorists of modern times, and one whose art has many points 
of resemblance with that of Cox. Miiller, then in his twenty- 
seventh year, had just returned to England after prolonged 
travels in the East, which he had employed with rare abilit)-. 
George Fripp, the water-colour painter, was a great friend of 
his, and through the instrumentality of Fripp, Miiller and 
Cox were made acquainted with each other. The art of Miiller 
Avas marvellously dexterous, his dash and rapid execution amazed 
Cox, who has recorded that at the first lesson the small picture 
which Miiller undertook by way of illustration was nearly 
completed at a single sitting. When he went for his second 
lesson, Miiller, being dissatisfied with his previous work, had 
wiped it out and had begun a second picture, the subject of 
which was " The Ammunition Waggon." 

Cox profited greatly in his mastery of the vehicle from 
the teaching of Miiller, though his style and his method of 
working were little influenced. Miiller could paint equally 
well with either hand, and when he was tired of working with 
the right hand he would use the left with perfect freedom. 
Sometimes we are told he worked with both hands at once !; 
It has been said that when engaged upon a canvas of large 
dimensions he would have a palette strapped upon each arm 
and would grasp in either hand a bundle of brushes. Such stories 
as these convey a vivid picture of the rapidity of his execution. 

We read, in the accounts left us of Cox, again and again of 
his admiration for the paintings of Miiller. He managed, 
either by exchange or purchase, to become the owner of 
several, which he valued most highly, and he would on no 
consideration be tempted to part with them. 


The desire for liberty and leisure to practise in the new 
medium grew upon Cox ; he was tired of his life ia London, 
and in the course of a visit he paid to Birmingham in March, 
1 84 1, he arranged to take a lease of Greenfield House, in the 
village of Harborne, about two miles out of the town. It 
was an old house and was much out of repair, but the landlord 
agreed to put it in order and to construct a good-sized 
bow-window in the principal sitting-room, which Cox con- 
sidered would give him a pleasant view of the garden. All 
repairs having been completed, Cox bade farewell to his 
friends and relatives at Kennington and started by train on 
June 20th, 1 841, for Birmingham. 

The change of residence was very agreeable to him ; he 
liked his new home and he was able to devote himself to the 
work he enjoyed. Some of his best paintings were executed 
at Harborne, and he attained during this period the height of 
his fame as a painter. 

The lanes and fields surrounding him at Harborne were very 
paintable. The suburbs of Birmingham were not then the 
"Black Country" that they have now become, and the artist 
found many pretty "bits" within a few yards of his dwelling. 
Greenfield House was rather an old-fashioned place, and the 
neighbourhood was well-wooded and close on the verge of 
pastoral country, where he could find pleasant fields and rustic 
scenes in abundance. His garden was a large one and was 
well-filled with flowers and shrubs, and he took a pride in its 
cultivation and worked in it himself. It contained among 
other things a willow which had grown from a slip brought 
from Napoleon's tomb at St. Helena. He was fond of 
cultivating broad-leaved plants, such as docks and rhubarb, 
suitable for foregrounds, and he especially delighted in 
hollyhocks, which grew round him in profusion. 



Though well advanced in years when he came to reside at 
Harborne, he was still hale and vigorous and not afraid of 
hard work, and he does not seem to have long delayed his 
intention to begin his new studies. His first care, however, was 
to prepare some drawings for the Manchester Exhibition, and 
after this was off his mind he worked hard at oil painting. 
Later in the year, accompanied by his friend, Mr. Birch, he 
paid a visit to Bolton Abbey. On his return we hear of him 
again busy painting, sometimes in oil and sometimes in water- 
colours and occasionally giving a few lessons. 

Concerning a visit paid to Yorkshire in the following year 
(1842), we read that for the first time he took with him a 
small easel and paint-box, and worked from Nature in oil, 
instead of making a preliminary study in water-colours as he 
had been wont to do. 

These early years of his return to Birmingham were rich in 
artistic progress, and at this period, as we have seen, some of 
his finest works were produced. His increasing powers as an 
oil-painter seem to have strengthened rather than impeded his 
mastery of water-colours. His work now shows at all points 
his perfect comprehension of the true vocation of the artist, to 
suggest rather than to produce a literal rendering of Nature. 
It is in the breadth and sweep of his style that we recognise 
the real charm of Cox's landscape art. He knew how little 
was really needed to conjure up all the scene in the imagination 
of the spectator, and he grasped in all its fulness the quality 
of mystery or suggestiveness, which calls into play the imagi- 
native powers of the beholder. A few strokes of his brush, a 
bright spot here and there of colour, sometimes a mere scratch 
with the knife, serve to reveal when viewed at their proper 
distance all he would wish us to remember of some sunlit 
distance or the cloud-shadows drifting over the far-off hills. 



Cox never condescended to minute finish, even his figures 
are mere blots of colour, if we examine them too closely, but 
how well do they fit into their places in his picture, and how 
true is the relative tone of foreground and distance ! A work 
by David Cox is sure to grow upon one ; we do not all at once 
discover its beauties ; the more diUgently we study it, the more 
we appreciate its subtle suggestiveness. 

It has been claimed for David Cox, by some well able to pro- 
nounce such an opinion, that he was pre-eminently a truthful 
painter — not in the pre-Raphaelite sense of truthfulness, indeed,, 
which would aim at the representation of every blade of grass and 
every spray of foliage, but in that he saw Nature as she appears 
to the instructed vision of the casual beholder. At times full 
of storm and mist, at others brilliant in a glow of sunlight, 
there is always a sparkle about his work and a true apprecia- 
tion of atmospheric effect — some effect he had really seen and 
transferred to his well-stored memory, and which he was then 
able to treasure up for all time and crystallize for ever by his 
powerful brush. 

How slight is the subject of many of his most charming 
drawings ! A wide expanse of sky, filled with clouds which we 
can almost fancy in motion; a gray undulating moorland 
whose colouring would seem to be indicated by one sweep of 
a well-filled pencil ; a few peasants according admirably in 
character with the landscape, and the whole so perfect that we 
feel that another touch would spoil it, and the least attempt at 
finish would destroy all the charms of its effect. The authors 
of the Century of Painters thus sum up his capabilities as an 
artist : " He seems more intent upon obtaining the exact tone 
and colour of Nature than in defining which is gradually 
developed in his pictures by the juxtaposition of hues and tints 
rather than by drawing. Apparently simple transcripts of 



Nature, his works are yet cunningly dominated by Art. The 
hght and shade are well distributed, the figures in the most 
appropriate place, the keeping always excellent. . . No 
painter has given us more truly the moist brilliancy of early 
summer-time, ere the sun has dried the spring bloom from the 
lately-opened leaf; the sparkle and shimmer of foliage and 
weedage in the fitful breeze that rolls away the clouds from the 
watery sun, when the shower and sunshine chase each other 
over the land, have never been given with greater truth than 
by David Cox." 

Cox first met with the rough paper in which he so greatly 
delighted in 1836. It was originally intended for use as a 
wrapping paper, and it was manufactured in Dundee. The 
surface was hard and firm, and it did not readily absorb colour. 
The paper was made from old linen sailcloth, well bleached. 
Having accidentally obtained a few sheets of it at Messrs. 
Grosvenor and Chater's, he took steps to procure more, and 
ultimately ordered a ream of it. It was some time before it 
was dehvered, and on its arrival he was surprised to find that 
the package weighed 280 lbs. This was much more than he 
had bargained for, and the price was ^11. His friend, 
Mr. Roberts, consented, however, to share the purchase with 
him ; but in later years, when he found that his favourite paper 
was no longer to be had, Cox was led to regret that he had 
not laid in a larger stock. This paper was very thick, not 
quite white, and had occasional specks of black and brown. 
Of course, in the landscape part of the picture these specks were 
of no importance, but they came awkwardly sometimes in the 
sky. On being asked on one occasion how he managed to 
get rid of them, he replied, "Oh, I just put wings to them, 
and then they fly away as birds ! " 

Soon after he began to paint in oil he sent works to tlie 




Royal Academy, and also to the British Institution. It is 
•owing to this fact that we have imagined that he was not 
immindful of possible recognition by the academicians ; but, 
be this as it may, he was but rarely a contributor of pictures 
in oil to the London Galleries. Mr. Solly quotes a letter from 
Mrs. Cox to her daughter-in-law, written in 1844, in which 
mention is made of the rejection of one of David Cox's 
works, which he tells us was " Going to the Hayfield." This 
had been sent to the British Institution and it was returned to 
him unhung. He was greatly mortified by this failure, and 
did not again send them a picture. 

In the year 1844 Cox paid his first visit to Bettws-y-Coed, 
and stayed several weeks at the ' Royal Oak.' He was intensely 
pleased with this place, and it became henceforth his most 
favourite sketching ground; in fact, he returned to Bettws 
almost each year until 1856, within three years of his death. 
Some of his best paintings were inspired by the scenes he 
witnessed in the lovely valley, and many of his happiest hours 
were spent among his friends at this retired Welsh village. 

It will be remembered that he painted the signboard for the 
* Royal Oak,' and that this work has recently been the subject 
of a protracted lawsuit. We read in a letter of his, dated 
September, 1847 : "The sign was in so bad a state, I thought 
I could not damage it much, and I set to work, and in a very 
short time made a tree much fresher in its looks than it was 
before." The subject was of course the tree in which King 
Charles took refuge, with horsemen beneath it and dogs in the 
distance. The sign no longer occupies its original place, but 
has been framed and carefully varnished, and hangs in the 
hall of the new Royal Hotel. 

In the course of 1879 the then tenant of the ' Royal Oak,' 
Mr. Thomas, became bankrupt, and the trustee . of his 


estate claimed the signboard as a valuable asset. This 
claim was disputed by Lady Willoughby d'Eresby, the owner 
of the Gwydyr estates, of which the hotel forms part, and 
the signboard was demanded on her behalf as the ground 
landlord of the property. The County Court Judge decided 
in her favour. On appeal to Sir J. Bacon, the chief justice 
in bankruptcy, a judgment was given on 13th Oct. 1880, 
reversing the decision of the County Court Judge; but on 
further appeal in February, 1881, Sir J. Bacon's decision was 
reversed, and it was finally decided that the inn-sign goes with 
the house and belongs to the owner of the hotel, where it still 

D 2 


The year 1845 was darkened by the shadow of a great 
sorrow, the loss of his tender and devoted wife, who passed 
away after a brief illness. This bereavement seems to have 
stunned poor Cox for awhile, and his letters of the period 
show how deeply she Avas mourned. Throughout their 
wedded life he had trusted greatly to her advice and highly 
valued her criticism and her opinion on his art. She spent* 
much of her time by his side while he painted, and she was 
in the habit of reading aloud to him while he was at work. 
Again and again we hieet Avith traces of her influence in 
Mr. Solly's biography, and we can appreciate how great must 
have been the shock occasioned by her decease. 

Cox Avas of a deeply religious temperament, and throughout 
life Avas a strict observer of Sunday, and doubtless he was 
fortified by the faith that was in him to face the blow. . He 
gradually returned to his cherished art, and painted as he had 
never painted before. The servant who had lived Avith the 
family for so many years made an excellent housekeeper, and 
the group of kind friends he had gathered round him at 
Harborne cheered him in his solitude. His son, who had 
married and settled in London, had a young family to Avhom 
Cox was deeply attached, and his passion for work no;doubt 
helped to engross his attention, and enabled him to bear up 
bravely against his sorroAvs. 



We now enter upon a period of the life of Cox which has 
been very fuUy described by his biographers, and the details of 
which are still, relatively speaking, fresh in the memories of 
many surviving friends. Mr. Hall bears pleasant testimony to 
the fun and mirth of the sketching excursions at Bettws-y-Coed, 
in which he took part, and of the sayings and doings of the 
artist on these occasions ; the jokes about the weather, the 
•choice of sketching grounds, the selection of subjects, the lunch 
and the soothing pipe. David Cox was a confirmed smoker, 
and derived much comfort from his cigar. He seems not to 
have been very particular whether it was a half-smoked one or 
not, and he would put away one that was partly consumed and 
return to it later with renewed relish. We read that he was a 
great stickler for punctuality, and that having made arrange- 
% ments to dine at a particular hour, he would insist upon going 
home at the proper time v/hen it arrived, and would allow no 
inducements to prevail upon him to stay and complete a 

He was, as we have already seen, an early riser, and he 
would often get up and do a great deal of work before break- 
fast. We are told that he would sometimes return from these 
early expeditions before his younger friends had left their bed- 
rooms. During wet weather he never allowed himself to be 
idle, but busied himself with studies of interiors, and sketches 
in the neighbouring barns and cowsheds. 

On one of the wet days when he was perforce compelled to 
remain indoors, Cox executed in water-colour paints on the un- 
sightly bare plaster of a bricked-up doorway of the ' Royal Oak,' 
a reminiscence of the fresco by the father of the author, which 
depicted " Catherine Douglas barring the castle door with hei: 
arm," one of the competition designs for the decoration of the 
new Houses of Parliament. This work was executed very effec- 



tively, and surprised many a stranger, we are told, on first entering- 
the room. When the house was altered, great pains were taken 
to preserve it uninjured, but we are not aware whether it still 
remains ; the original fresco has, we regret to say, become a 
wreck. The visitors' book at the inn was also supplied by 
Cox, who enriched it with a vigorous sketch of an oak-tree, and 
inscribed his name on the first page. 

As time wore on, and as Bettws-y-Coed became more and 
more a place of fashionable resort for artists and tourists. Cox 
put up at the Church Farm, which was the property of the 
landlord of the ' Royal Oak,' and which was rather quieter and 
more suited to his habits than the crowded inn. In the early 
days he merely slept at the farm, and came across to the ' Royal 
Oak ' for his meals, but subsequently he seems to have stayed 
there altogether, as the bustle at the inn was too much for him. « 
This arrangement was first made in the autumn of 1854. 

While Cox was staying at the ' Royal Oak ' at the latter end 
of 1849, Mr. Solly tells us, a Miss Roberts, who was a relation, 
of the landlord, died. She was quite young, and was much 
beloved in the neighbourhood, and her death was the occasion 
of much sorrow and sympathy. Cox attended the funeral,, 
which according to local custom took place in the evening, and 
his impression of the ceremony resulted in his picture of " The 
Welsh Funeral," one of the most powerful and important of his 
works, originally exhibited in 1850, It represents the hills and 
crags on the eastern side of the valley of Bettws-y-Coed, under 
which, partly concealed by foliage, amongst which the dark 
boughs of the yew are conspicuous, is the belfry of the little 
church in which the bell may be seen on the swing. Along 
the road, with their backs to the spectator, wend the melancholy 
train of mourners, chiefly weeping women in long cloaks.. 
Among them is the figure of an old man with a stick, said to 



represent the artist. The road is bordered by the characteristic 
stone dykes. This picture was unsold at the exhibition, but it 
attracted the attention of Mr. Topham, who persuaded the 
holder of a ;^5o Art Union prize to become its possessor. The 
owner, however, does not appear to have appreciated the 
treasure, and he subsequently resold it to Mr. Topham, from 
whom it passed to Mr, Craven. This picture was one of the 
gems of the Art Treasures Exhibition at Manchester in 

The summer visits to Bettws-y-Coed resulted in rich stores 
of sketches, which Cox was wont to work up into finished 
pictures during the remainder of the year at Harborne ; he 
often painted by lamplight, and we find from some hints 
given in a letter to his son that he considered many valuable 
effects could best be obtained by the use of artificial light. 
His life seems to have been very quiet and peaceful after he 
had settled down to work steadily in oils. He at first mis- 
trusted his powers in the new medium, and was fond of taking 
counsel from certain of his Birmingham friends who had long 
practised oil-painting. The advice of Mr. Roberts seems to 
have been often sought, and his biographer,, Mr. Hall, was a 
constant guest and critic. 

Mr. Hall has given us a vivid picture of the daily life at 
Glenfield House, the last home of David Cox. He tells us 
that there was nothing in its external appearance to attract 
attention. " It was modest and old-fashioned, containing a 
front parlour with a bow-window looking into the garden ; 
another smaller sitting-room adjoining it, only occasionally 
used ; and a kitchen on the same level, with a particularly 
light, cheerful, and cleanly look; roomy and comfortable, with 
generally a flitch of bacon and some hams hanging from the 
ceiling." "The 'master' usually sat in the parlour in front. 



There he frequently worked at his drawings when the weather 
was too cold to sit in the painting-room upstairs, and always in 
the evening, by lamplight, when alone and not expecting 
friends to drop in for an hour's pleasant chat." 

These simple gatherings of friends and admirers of his art 
became towards the close of his career a strong feature of his 
life at Harborne. Once or twice a week a knot of his friends 
from Birmingham dropped in after tea for a gossip, bringing 
with them the latest news, and enjoying the treat of looking 
over his portfolios and seeing the progress he had made in the 
works on hand; one of the party became showman for the 
night, as Mr. Hall tells us, and placed the drawings one 
after the other on the small table-easel; whilst the others sat 
round and admired and criticised the sketches submitted to 
them. Any hints made as to alteration or improvement. Cox 
always listened to attentively and often enough was ready to 

His son generally came down to stay with him at Christmas 
time, and this was made the occasion of a more than usually 
pleasant gathering of friends and a great overhauling of sketches. 
It was then he decided upon the drawings to be sent to the 
forthcoming exhibition, and selected the sketches which were 
to be worked up and completed. He had always a large 
number of outlines and suggestions for subjects on hand — 
pictures in embryo, if we may so style them. Many of them 
were touched in slightly in outline during his summer excur- 
sions to Bettws-y-Coed, or roughed in by lamplight during the 
long evenings at Harborne. When his son visited him, there 
was, moreover, much to be done in the mounting of sketches 
completed, the straining of paper for fresh work, and the 
finishing touches to drawings executed on commission. 

To certain of his sketches Cox became peculiarly attached, 



and no inducement would tempt him to part with them. Thus 
we read in a letter to his son, dated August 16, 1848 : "You 
must know that with the sales of my drawings in the exhibition, 
my July dividend, and the sale of my ' Green Lane,' * alto- 
gether enabled me to buy ;^2oo stock. The parting with the 
drawing of the ' Green Lane ' was the most unpleasant part of 
the transaction ; but I hope to do better things some day." On 
the other hand, he sometimes appeared peculiarly reluctant to 
complete works that had been bespoken, or on the^back of 
which intending purchasers had written their names. He 
seemed to lose all interest in them, and preferred to lay them 
aside and to take up some fresh subject or to work out some 
new " idea." These ideas sometimes occurred to him while he 
was in the midst of the work on some other picture ; but he 
Avould at once turn away from the drawing on hand to realise 
the new impression, and was thus constantly wandering away, 
we read, " to fresh woods and pastures new." 

It was the disinclination during the close of his life to 
embark upon a large picture which led to the comparatively 
small size of his paintings in oil. He could not command the 
fire and perseverance needed for the completion of a picture of 
large dimensions, hence the fact that tlie great majority of his 
oil pictures are on a small scale, and bear the impress of 
rapid and facile execution. He was fond of painting on mill- 
board, and he had a colour-box contrived to hold two mill- 
boards so that they could be placed face to face without touch- 
ing one another. When out sketching in Bettws he would 
begin two subjects in one day, painting on each alternately, the 
one a morning, the other an afternoon effect. His price for 
these small pictures was ^'j 10s. each, but he would charge 
^8 if they were extra well finished. Many of these small 
* The fine picture subsequently acquired by Mr. Quilter for ^368. 



paintings have since his death been sold for twenty or thirty 
times the amount he was paid for them. 

One of these httle pictures was once rescued by Mr. Hall, 
he tells us, under the following circumstances : He was paint- 
ing with Cox in the big meadow at Bettws-y-Coed by the side 
of the river Llugwy, the subjects they were engaged upon 
being close at hand. " An hour or two had passed very 
pleasantly, both pictures, judging from the space of canvas 
covered, had progressed apparently well," when all of a sudden 
Mr. Hall heard a great bustle behind him, and looking round 
to ascertain the cause saw Cox preparing, rag in hand, to rub 
out the whole of his morning's work. " What is the matter ? 
Don't do that, Mr. Cox ! " " Matter ! " said Cox, " why I can't 
paint at all to-day, Nature is a great deal too hard for me." 
And again he prepared to efface what he had been doing. 
" Stop ! stop ! " said Mr. Hall, " don't rub it out, give it to me ; 
I like it very much, it is very good indeed." " Take it along 
then," said Cox. " Can you spare me a tube of Indian yellow ? 
I have used all mine. Give me one for the picture." Needless 
to say, the exchange was made with great satisfaction to 
Mr. Hall, on whose walls the sketch was afterwards much 

In the valuable Memoir of Cox by Mr. Solly, he has col- 
lected together a large number of the letters written by Cox to 
his friends during his visits to Bettws, or while he was living at 
Harborne. Some of the earlier letters are in fac-simile, and 
give us an admirable idea of the bold and vigorous calligraphy 
of the artist. He wrote an upright hand, somewhat angular 
but highly characteristic. He always signs his name in full 
David Cox, and this signature he almost invariably appended 
to his completed works. We do not remember to have seen 
any picture by him signed only D. Cox. 


One of the chief events towards the close of his Ufe was his. 
journey to Edinburgh in 1856, to have his portrait painted. 
It was suggested early in 1855, by certain of his Birmingham 
friends and patrons, that a portrait should be painted of him 
by some artist of eminence, with a view of its presentation ta 
one of the public galleries in his native town. The proposal 
was warmly taken up, and a Committee was formed to carry 
out the project. When a sufficient sum had been collected, 
the commission was entrusted to Sir J. Watson Gordon, R.A., 
P.R.S.A. But here a difficulty arose which it took some time- 
to overcome. The eminent portrait-painter was advanced in 
years, and could not come to Birmingham to undertake the 
picture, and Cox was not only old but in feeble health, and 
very infirm. His friends feared the excitement and strain of 
the long journey to Edinburgh, and though his medical adviser 
thought it might be accomplished in easy stages, Cox himself 
declined to attempt it. However, after much persuasion, he 
at length consented to undergo the fatigue and risks of a visit 
to the North, and in the month of August, 1856, he started for 
Scotland, accompanied by Mr. Hall and his son. 

It was decided to break the journey at Carlisle, and Cox took 
advantage of a stroll on the ramparts to make a sketch of the 
Keep of the fine old Castle. On the evening of the second 
day they reached Edinburgh, and on the morrow presented 



themselves at the studio of Sir John, in George Street. He 
appears to have been deUghted with his sitter, assuring him that 
he had not had so fine a subject since he painted Sir Walter 
Scott, whom Cox at that period somewhat resembled. The 
portrait progressed rapidly, and in five sittings the artist had 
accomplished all that he required fi:om the life. The likeness 
was a great success, and added mucli to the reputation of Sir 
J. W. Gordon when it was exhibited next year at the Royal 
Academy in London. We are able to present our readers 
with a reproduction of this excellent portrait, which forms the 
frontispiece of the Memoir. It recalls in a striking manner 
the attitude and appearance of the venerable artist, and gives 
a vivid impression of his kindly and intelligent features. 

In describing a visit paid to the house of Sir J. W. Gordon, 
near Newhaven, where Cox was invited to dine with him, Mr. 
Hall tells us that in an outhouse at the bottom of the garden 
there was a workshop and all the requisite tools for making 
the stretchers for his pictures, and he adds that his canvasses 
were also prepared on the premises with the assistance of a 
relative, Mr. Watson. The material on which he painted was 
not the ordinary canvas, but so-called Scotch sheeting. 

After a stay of a week in Edinburgh the party returned south, 
resting for a short time at the pretty cottage of Mr. R. G. 
Reeves at Bolton-le-Sands. 

The portrait, after it had been exhibited in London, was 
most successfully engraved, for presentation to the subscribers, 
by Mr. Samuel Bellin, and the plate was handed to Cox to be 
bequeathed to his son. 

The formal presentation of the picture to Cox took place at 
the house of Mr. Charles Birch, the chairman of the com- 
mittee, on November 19th, 1855. A large party met at 
Metchley Abbey, Harborne, on the occasion, and after the 


dinner an address was read by the secretary, in which the 
respect and admiration of the subscribers for the genius and 
perseverance of the artist were feehngly and ably set forth. 
In the concluding paragraph the hope was expressed that he 
might long be spared to wear the laurels he had so well won, 
to give evidence of the unabated freshness of his thoughts'and 
the vigour of his pencil, and to enjoy the serene repose of a 
virtuous and honoured old age. Poor Cox was greatly over- 
come by the comphments bestowed upon him^, but was unable 
to do more than bow his acknowledgments for their kindness, 
and at the conclusion of the few words uttered on his 'behalf 
by Dr. Bell Fletcher, his friend and medical adviser, he wished 
his kind and hospitable entertainers good night and went 
home to his frugal supper of bread and milk. 

When the portrait was returned from the engraver it was 
deposited with Cox to be retained by him during his lifetime, 
and to be subsequently placed as the committee had decided 
in some public institution in Birmingham. It hung for some 
years in his sitting-room at Harborne, and was removed at his 
death to the Birmingham and Midland Institute. It now 
occupies a place of honour in the Corporation Museum and Art 
Gallery among the fine collection of Cox's works bequeathed 
to the town by the late Mr. Joseph H. Nettlefold. 

Cox himself was greatly pleased with the picture, and often 
said to his friends, " Oh, I wish David could have had that 
picture ! " So strong was his desire that his son should possess 
his likeness, painted by an artist of distinction, that he 
ultimately resolved to come up to London and to sit to Mr. 
(afterwards Sir Wra.) Boxall. This he did in the year following, 
and the portrait, which was an excellent one, though it did not 
give so much general satisfaction as that of the Scotch painter, 
was afterwards presented to his son. 



Throughout the winter of 1855 and the spring of the 
following year Cox continued to paint both in oil and water- 
colours, but he was beginning to feel acutely the decline of 
his powers. His eyesight failed him and his hand was 
trembling and unsteady. In the course of a visit to London 
in the early summer of 1857 he was attacked with a rather 
serious illness, but he recovered in a short time sufficiently to 
•enable him to return home. Both during the remainder of 
•this year, and throughout 1858 he did not stir from home 
beyond occasional short strolls in the vicinity, and he was 
■compelled by increasing infirmity to forego a visit to his 
beloved Bettws-y-Coed. 

Early in 1859 his illness increased considerably in severity, 
and during the greater part of January his life was despaired 
■of. But again he rallied and was able to get downstairs and 
to resume his painting. A severe cold, acquired soon after he 
liad sent off his drawings to the exhibition, again prostrated 
him and left him visibly weakened, and though he bore up 
for awhile, he had at the beginning of June once more to take 
to his bed. 

Mr. Hall tells us that one evening just before this happened, 
when he was retiring to rest earlier than usual, worn out with 
pain and weariness, he looked round his old sitting-room as he 
went out at the door, and, taking a loving glance at the pictures 
he seemed to have a presentiment that he should see no more, 
■said mournfully, " Good-bye, pictures ! " 

In a few days he became decidedly worse, and on the 7th 
■of' June he expired quite tranquilly, in the presence of his son 
and the sorrowing members of his household, in his 77th year. 
His last words were " God bless you all ! " 

Seven days later he was laid to rest in Harborne Church- 
yard, in the grave to which he had been preceded some fourteen 



years before by his wife, beneath the branches of a spreading 
chestnut tree. Many of his oldest friends and most intimate 
associates were present at the funeral, together with the repre- 
sentatives of the societies of which he was a member : Mr, 
Frederick Tayler representing the Old Water-Colour Society, 
and Mr. Peter HoUins attending on behalf of the Birmingham 
Society of Artists. 

In honour of his memory a few of his old friends subscribed 
for a window to be placed in Harborne Church, beneath 
which is the following simple inscription, "To the glory of 
God and in memory of David Cox, Artist, this window was 
erected by a few friends, a.d. 1874." 

Cox's will was signed on 2nd August, 1858, and after 
bequeathing drawings to friends and executors, he left sub- 
stantial legacies to each of his four grand-daughters, ;^5oo to 
his faithful housekeeper Ann Fowler, who had been with him 
since her childhood, first as servant and then in charge of his 
household, his son being named residuary legatee of all his 
estate and effects. His property was proved under 2,000, 
a modest sum enough when we come to think of the prices 
which some of his best works have since realised, but to him a 
competency for those he loved, and for whom he had laboured 
so unremittingly. His son, who died in 1885, retained all his 
father's own works, paintings, drawings, and sketches, though 
many we believe have now been parted with by the family. 
David Cox, jun., was elected an Associate of the Old Water- 
Colour Society in 1845, and worked much after the manner 
of his father. 

Poor Cox was scarcely cold in his grave before the public 
began to be aware of the true value of his works. Shortly before 
his death, towards the close of 1858, an exhibition of some of 
his pictures had taken place in the large room of the Conver- 



sazione Society at Hampstead. This display, though it was 
not a thoroughly representative one, contained many fine 
examples, and among the chief contributors were Mr. W. S. 
Ellis, Mr. Hollingsworth, Mr. Mayou, Mr. Wilkinson, and others, 
together with Cox and his son, and early in the following 
year a much more important exhibition was organised in the 
Gallery at i68. New Bond Street, the proceeds of which were 
devoted to " The Artists' Benevolent Fund." The collection 
comprised 169 works, some in oil and some in water-colour. 
The committee was an influential one, and among the con- 
tributors we find the names of many of the artist's most ardent 
admirers. In a notice of this exhibition quoted by Mr. Solly, 
it is stated that it " cannot fail to prove a rich treat, and will 
convince any sceptic, if he has eyes, that David Cox must 
always stand in the first rank of British landscape painters." 

A far more representative display, however, of the art of 
Cox, was that formed under the auspices of the Liverpool Art 
Club at the close of 1875, and which was opened to the public 
in their rooms at Myrtle Street. The collection consisted of 
no less than 448 works of all periods. It contained, in all, 
5 7 pictures in oil, together with a large number of his most 
important water-colour drawings, and many sketches in sepia 
and charcoal. The exhibition at Liverpool had been preceded 
in 1870 by one on a smaller scale at Manchester, and it must 
not be forgotten that the fine display of his works at the Art 
Treasures Exhibition in Manchester in 1857 was probably the 
first occasion on which the art of Cox came prominently into 
public notice. 

At this time the works of Cox were still far from popular, 
and the rage for the collection of his drawings had not set in. 
It is, therefore, interesting to note that no less than eighteen 
very choice pictures by him were shown at Manchester, and 


many Art lovers were astonished to find so great a painter 
comparatively so little known. 

In the International Exhibition of 1862, Cox was repre- 
sented by " The Welsh Funeral," " The Junction of the Severn 
and the Wye," " Going to the Hayfield," " Beaumaris," 
" Beeston Castle," " Fern Gatherers," and " The Horse Fair." 
Mr. Palgrave, in his handbook to the Fine Arts Catalogue, says 
concerning certain of these drawings, " They belong peculiarly 
to the artist's later style, in which his often blurred and 
imperfectly realised execution is a severe lesson to the lover of 
the neat and the conventional. Yet this seemingly slight and 
hasty touch conceals a thoughtfulness and a delicacy in 
handling, which is more like Turner's than any other man's 



The display of the works of Cox in the Historical Collection 
of Water-Colours at South Kensington, though somewhat 
meagre, is, taken as a whole, one fairly representative of the 
various phases of his art. It comprises eleven drawings, none 
of them quite capable of ranking with his best efforts, though 
" The Challenge, A Storm on the Moor," depicting a snorting 
bull in the midst of a violent tempest of wind and rain, is a 
very fine work. This drawing formed part of the collection 
bequeathed by the late Mr. Townshend, which included many 
important pictures, among them two other works by Cox. 
The late Mr. William Smith bequeathed the fine early work 
entitled " Water Mill, North Wales," the sketch of " Dover 
Pier," and the unfinished "Hilly Landscape with Figures." 

Perhaps the earliest in point of date of these sketches is the 
" Water Mill " (p. 9), a drawing which strongly reminds us of 
the works of Havell, both in colouring and in the method of 
treatment. Like them, also, it has suffered severely from the 
fading of the blues and the undue prominence thus given to 
the Indian red or other more stable pigment. We have 
reproduced this sketch as an example of Cox's early style. It 
shows no use of body-colour, but the penknife has been freely 
employed to give the light on the water, the ducks and the 
sparkle on the water-wheel. It is rather stiff and formal in 
treatment, and we miss in it that feeling for air-tints and 



delicate gradations of colour, which forms the principal charm 
in his later works. Somewhat subsequent to this in point of 
time is the grand drawing entitled " The Llug Meadows," 
which doubtless belongs to the early days of his residence at 
Hereford, and would therefore have been produced about 1816. 
A characteristic of all these early works is the evident attempt 
at careful composition, the sombre tone, and the serious 
damage they have undergone due to the failure of the blue 
(doubtless indigo.) 

The charming drawing of " A Hayfield," which we have 
reproduced at p. 19, belongs to his best period, and has all the 
delicacy and grace of his mature handling. In our illustration 
it suffers somewhat from the faintness of the sky, which in 
the picture is filled with a grand mass of rolling cumulus cloud. 
The middle distance has come out a trifle dark, and the glow of 
sunlight on the distant hills scarcely takes its true keeping as in 
the original. The figures here, as in most of Cox's works, are 
admirably touched in. The drawing bears the signature some- 
what indistinctly written in the left-hand corner. Cox had a 
trick of using the same name for his pictures again and again, 
and of some of his most successful works he produced numerous 
replicas ; thus there are three " Welsh Funerals" known to us, 
and at least four drawings entitled " Skirts of the Forest : " this 
repetition leads at times to confusion. 

Quite in his later manner, and a gem of atmospheric treat- 
ment, is the little sketch at Kensington, a "Showery Effect," 
which is signed and dated 1854, and was evidently produced 
about that time. Some of these blurred drawings have been 
found fault with by critics as hasty and blotted ; but Cox had a 
reason for all his brush-work, and a careful study of the 
pictures wherein he aimed at some effect of storm, or mist, or 
passing shower will persuade the Art-lover that to blame him 

E 2 



is to fail to perceive subtle beauties of handling which grow 
upon us the longer we study his methods. 

" The Challenge," already referred to by us, belongs to Cox's 
latest period. The sky is black with rain, the bull stands to 
the right of the picture amidst a wild and rocky moorland 
landscape, bordered afar off by some misty hills which tell out 
light against the dark mid-distance. A pool of water to the 
left catches a bright gleam from the sky. The scene inspires a 
vivid feeling of bleakness and desolation and the torrential rain 
sweeps down in pitiless streams ; no work we have seen by 
David Cox can compare with this in the mastery displayed in 
dealing with atmospheric effects of the most difficult and 
complex nature. This drawing was exhibited at the Old 
Water-Colour Society in 1853. 

From the admirable collection of Mr. James Orrock, we 
have been permitted to reproduce two works by Cox, the more 
important of which is the oil-painting entitled " Going to the 
Plough," p. 35. Like many of his most striking pictures this 
landscape is made up of very slender materials. It would seem 
to be a tract of the fen-country. In the middle distance we see 
a team of horses drawing the plough and some carts, and near 
the front of the picture to the left are two horses going forward 
to join those at work. A mass of tangled weedage fills the 
foreground, and to the right is a little pool of water with its 
sparkling reflection of the sky. This is one of his early works 
in oil, as it is signed and dated 1841, the year of his 
retirement to Harborne. The collection of Mr. Orrock is 
rich both in works in oil and water-colours, far more so than 
any other private collection. His picture, entitled " Crossing 
the Sands from Market," we have already described on p. 25. 
This in subject and mode of treatment recalls the Birmingham 
picture of " The Shrimpers." The perspective of the train of 



figures passing away into the distance is admirably thought 
out, and the dark shadow in the foreground gives tone and 
richness to the tract of sand in the middle distance. 

In order to form a correct estimate of Cox's power and 
genius as a painter in oil, it is necessary to undertake a pil- 
grimage to the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, where, 
in consequence of the noble bequest of the late Mr. Joseph H. 
Netdefold, a far finer collection of his works has been brought 
together than in any other locality. To some extent there is a 
fitness in this rich representation of the artist in the place of 
his birth, though it cannot fail to be a matter of regret that Cox 
is not seen to greater advantage in our Metropolitan Galleries. 
In the Print-room of the British Museum, and in the National 
Collections at Trafalgar Square and South Kensington, but 
scant justice is done to his powers as a water-colour painter, 
and as an oil painter he is in London itself but little known. 
It is true that he achieved fame and made his mark in our midst 
in the former medium, and that it was not until late in life that he 
did great things in oil ; but few who have had an opportunity 
of examining a good collection of Cox's works in oil will deny 
that he succeeded admirably also in that branch of Art, and 
that he takes a high rank among the oil painters. 

We have felt some hesitation in deciding whether to represent 
his art more largely by his oil pictures or by his water-colour 
drawings ; indeed ; but for the liberality with which the trustees 
of the Birmingham Collection have responded to our request 
to reproduce some of their treasures, we should have confined 
ourselves chiefly to his earlier and better known work in water- 
colours. We trust, however, that it will be deemed that justice 
Jias here been done to the art of Cox in each of the phases in 
■which he was pre-eminent. 

It is a hard task at the present day, when men of all shades 



of opinion combine to do homage to his genius, to believe that 
less than half a century ago his works were looked upon with 
indifference by the connoisseurs and lightly esteemed by the 
best judges of the time. The admirers of David Cox were a 
select few — his art did not appeal to the uninstructed public, 
and his drawings were sold, as we have seen, at comparatively 
small prices. There was, even in those early days, however, a 
band of devoted admirers of the art of Cox in Birmingham, 
who, long before the merits of his works had forced themselves 
upon the notice of art-buyers in London, recognised his power 
as a landscape painter, and eagerly bought up his works both 
in the pubUc galleries and in his own studio. 

The collection formed by Mr. J. Nettlefold, one of his 
Birmingham patrons, and bequeathed to his native city, brings 
before us a series of oil-paintings representative of the best 
work of Cox in this medium, and it has furnished many of our 
illustrations in the present work. 

Foremost in importance among these we must place " The 
Skirts of the Forest," see p. 53, a subject rather larger in size 
than Cox was wont to attempt in oil, and which was originally 
painted for Mr. David Jones. It is a scene in Sherwood 
Forest, and depicts some stunted and weather-beaten oaks, 
which have borne for many a long year the force of gale and 
tempest. The colouring is rich and effective, and the group 
of peasants give scale and importance to the forest trees ; to the 
left is a glimpse of water, which the artist so often introduces 
with good effect, and some fine bold leafage and water-plants. 

Of all the oil pictures in the Birmingham Galleries, none is 
more pleasing in colour and treatment than the small work, 
dated 1849, entitled " Tending Sheep, Bettws-y-Coed," illus- 
trated on p. 27. Beneath the shadows of some dark trees in 
the foreground are the shepherd and the sheep, while the 



rough liiountain-side forms an appropriate background. The 
subject is one somewhat out of the common, and the execution 
is in the artist's best style. " Changing Pastures," a reproduction 
of which will be found on p. 41, is another favourite picture; 
it is dated 1847. The upper part of the sky is filled with dark 
leaden clouds, the scene is taken at eventime. Of the two 
shepherds, the one is standing and the other reclines, as the 
sheep rush through an open gate in the centre of the picture. 
There is a beautiful passage of bluish-green sky, and some cirrus 
clouds faintly tinged with the setting sun. The landscape is 
flecked with cloud-shadows; on a hill to the right of the 
spectator is a windmill. The picture has the usual broken 
foreground in which Cox delighted. 

Another beautiful little picture of a subject he frequently 
repeated is entitled " Going to the Hayfield," signed and dated 
1853 (see p. 49). This drawing contains more minute and 
careful detail than we generally find in Cox's works. The figures 
are very accurately put in, and the effects of the breeze on the 
draperies are clearly indicated. The sky with its mass of 
grey clouds is finely rendered, and as we look into the picture 
we can see clearly that a shower is impending, but still on the 
whole the landscape is full of sunshine. 

"The Shrimpers," dated in the same year, 1853, which 
forms the headpiece to Chapter II., is yet another example 
of the manner in which Cox could make a picture out of scanty 
materials. We see a tract of sandy foreshore, with some low 
hills in the distance, the sky filled with a mass of rolling grey 
clouds. In the front of the picture is a man on horseback, and 
two women with their nets going away from the spectator (Cox 
§0 often chooses to represent the figures with their faces turned 
away from us). In the middle distance are some horsemen 
galloping across the sands. 



It has become a practice in recent times to bring together 
on special occasions the selected works of artists whom the 
public delight to honour, and, as we have seen, the art of Cox 
has been frequently thus selected for display. It is paying 
him no mean compliment when we say that, seen together at 
such timeSj his works are sure to be a source of delight, and that 
they do not suffer from this juxtaposition. It is only pictures 
of rare excellence which can stand such an ordeal as this, but it 
is one in which the art of Cox appears to great advantage. As 
Ave go to press another exhibition is about to be opened at 
Birmingham, which will be the most important and representa- 
tive display of any which have hitherto taken place. 


In the South Kens'meton Museum. 



It is a trite saying that "happy is the nation that has no 
history " ; this remark, we think, possibly apphes with equal 
force to individuals as it does to nations. An uneventful 
life is very often a joyful and a prosperous one ; and yet 
happiness is so rare in this world that it surely deserves to be 
chronicled. The difficulty we encounter in depicting such 
a life is that there is so little to record about it, especially 
when, as is the case with the subject of this memoir, happiness 
has been secured by a round of duties conscientiously performed, 
by domestic felicity based upon the sure foundation of moral 
worth, and by the calm pursuit of an art for which the votary 
had an vmusual and original vocation ; and not by startling and 
extraordinary efforts, not by wonderful or curious fortunes or 
misfortunes, nor by brilliant strokes of erratic genius. 

Peter de Wint's hfe exemplifies the former conditions by its 
simple, calm, and uneventful course, while at the same time it is 
far removed from the commonplace, not only on account of his 
great merit as a painter, but owing also to his possession of 
a privilege of perhaps still more rare attainment — a faithful 

So many years have now elapsed since De Wint's death, that 



it is a little difficult to reproduce the mere facts of his life, much 
more the feelings and thoughts of the man who seems to have 
been not altogether easy to understand. His single-hearted 
friendship may even have stood in the way; his affections, 
though so deep, were perhaps on that very account not so 
expansive ; his home life was so happy that he had small 
occasion to take counsel with the outer world,! and his art 
was so absorbing that his whole mind leant entirely to its due 

Yet though DeWint's life seemed to flow on so calmly, there 
were circumstances connected with his birth and parentage 
which had in them something of romance. He sprang, as his 
name implies, from a mixed race, and tokens of his Dutch and 
Scotch origin are developed in the painter, and confirm the 
usual belief that the alliance of persons of different nationalities 
tends to effect the improvement of the race. 

The De Wints or De Windts, as the name was first spelt, came 
originally from Holland, and the ancestors of the painter were 
merchants of wealth and position in Amsterdam. Their coat- 
of-arms, consisting of " Four heads proper blowing four winds," 
conveys an appropriate idea of their hereditary instincts, which 
led them to emigrate to various countries. 

One of our painter's forefathers settled in the West Indies, 
another left the quaint Dntch town, built upon piles, with its 
slow canals and busy marts, to try his fortune among the more 
active settlers in the new continent of America. The grand- 
father of Peter de Wint lived near New York, where he enjoyed 
a comfortable fortune, and, mindful of that land from whence 
he came forth, sent his second son Henry, our painter's father, 
to be educated at the University of Leyden. How the young 
man got on in his father's country is not recorded, but while 
still quite young he came over to England, inclining perhaps to 



a place where they spoke his mother-tongue, and joined the 
staff of St. Thomas's Hospital, for his education had fitted him 
to enter the medical profession, and he • only wanted to improve 
himself in its practice. 

Once arrived in London he probably went into society here, 
at any rate the young physician did not pass his days entirely 
alone, for the little God of Love came in unawares to upset, 
with his fiery dart, the plans which the father in America had 
matured for the future of his young doctor-son. Miss Carohne 
Watson, a young Scotch lady of good birth, but of no fortune, 
for her father had dissipated his property by his adherence to 
the unfortunate cause of the young Pretender, engaged Henry 
de Wint's affections, and he married the young lady without, 
apparently, informing his father in New York of the fact, until 
they had been husband and wife for some time, and had given 
hostages to fortune in the shape of two children. 

The father in the meantime had allowed the young physician 
;^SOo a year, and he intended him upon his return to New 
York to supplement this allowance and his professional gains 
by marrying a rich cousin. On hearing that his son was 
already provided with a wife, and of the hopelessness therefore 
of keeping the family wealth in the family name, he immediately 
disinherited the young physician. Henry de Wint never again 
saw his father, as almost directly after the old man had taken 
this decisive step, he received an injury by falling out of his 
carriage. From this he never recovered, and dying very 
shortly afterwards from its effects, his money all went to his 
elder son. 

The younger De Wint resolved to remain in England and to ' 
set up as a doctor. This he did first at Cardiff in Wales, 
where, however, he did not remain long, for finding he could 
not understand the Welsh language and disliking the class of 



patients who resorted to him for advice, he moved later to 
Stone in Staffordshire, where he had been told there was an 
opening for a medical man. This period must have been a time 
of struggle and poverty for the young couple, for youth is no 
recommendation for a physician, and in his case there was the 
added drawback of his being a stranger, though from an 
English-speaking land. 

It was at Stone in Staffordshire, therefore, that Peter de 
Wint, the fourth son of the physician, and the future painter, 
first saw the light on the 21st of January, 1784. There are 
few records of his early days, he was but one in a large family, 
twelve in all we beheve, though five only seem to have reached 
man's estate. Like many boys, he was devoted to the study of 
natural objects ; he delighted in watching the flight of birds, 
in listening to the babbling of the brook, and the soughing of 
the wind in the trees, and from this cause he was happy and 
contented when out of doors, alone with Nature, and he pre- 
ferred those hours which he spent in solitude in the woods, and 
in the unrestricted enjoyment of rural life. 

Like many other painters, he was from a child devoted to 
drawing, and he always expressed his strong desire to become an 
artist. This love of scribbling and sketching is observable in 
many boys who never take to art as a profession, but it is a 
little singular in one whose family seemed totally without any 
artistic instinct, and who can rarely have seen a picture, or an 
artist at work. 

His passion for drawing became so developed at school, 
that he not only taught it to his schoolfellows, but he em- 
ployed as many of his school hours as he dared in its pursuit. 
His father, perceiving his devotion to art, allowed him a few 
lessons from a Mr. Rogers, a drawing-master of Stafford, 
though he himself destined his son for the medical profession. 



It was not until Peter had left school, that, finding how he 
disliked the prospect of studying medicine, his father resolved 
to allow him to follow Art. 

For this purpose he placed him as a pupil with an eminent 
mezzotint engraver of that day, John Raphael Smith. The 
youth probably delighted in this move ; we hear that when in 
early boyhood he first saw an engraving, in the total dearth 
and want of art or pictures which surrounded his childhood, he 
was so enchanted with it that he thought it must be the work 
of an angel ! Now he, too, was going to take part in " angels' " 
work, and was to join that grand community, of whom one of 
the greatest, on examining a fine masterpiece, could find no 
other language than those joyful words, " I, too, am a painter ! " 

John Raphael Smith was the younger son of a self-taught 
local artist of Derby, who desiring the best gifts, or what he 
considered as such, for his two boys, had christened the elder 
" Correggio," and the younger " Raphael." Correggio's career 
in art was a mediocre one ; but as he lived in Staffordshire, 
near the De Wints, it was probably through him that they 
knew of his more celebrated brother, J. R. Smith, who has 
claims of a more decided character to our regard. 

His works in mezzotint are full of colour and are charming 
in drawing. He began life as a shopman in a linen-drapery 
establishment, and he devoted his leisure to the production of 
miniatures ; but these are rather poor in quality and not to be 
compared with his engravings, nor are his crayon-portraits, 
though they show more ability, so remarkable for their quality 
as for their quantity. It is owing to his engravings, particularly 
to his works after Reynolds, that he became popular, formed an 
extensive connection, and was appointed engraver to the Prince 
of V/ales. 

His other qualifications for superintending and guiding 



pupils were scarcely equal to his art ones, for he was fond of 
pleasure and of lively company and he was much addicted to all 
kinds of field sports. He was one of George Morland's boon 
companions, and probably shared in his dissipations. However, 
it was to Smith's care and tuition that Hilton's parents had 
confided their only son, William, and here in Smith's house in 
King Street, Covent Garden, young Hilton was joined on Friday, 
April ist, 1802, by a fellow-pupil, his future friend, Peter De 
Wint. So impatient was De Wint to start on his work, that he 
heeded not the superstitions attached to beginning anything on 
a Friday as an unlucky day, and boded nothing ill from the 
bad reputation of the ist of April. Directly preliminaries 
were settled, he set off for town, notwithstanding the admoni- 
tions of his friends, and ever afterwards was wont to declare 
the combined dates to be peculiarly lucky as having in- 
troduced him to the friend of his heart and to the art he 
so much loved. 

The enduring friendship of the two painters for each other is 
so rare, and also so perfect, that here it may be as well to pause 
awhile in our account of De Wint, in order to give a brief sketch 
of his friend's career down to the time when they met in the 
studio of J. R. Smith, and when their life-long affection had its 

Unlike De Wint, Hilton came of an artistic family, his 
father being a portrait painter, who though born at Newark, 
had lived in two cathedral cities, Norwich and Lincoln. It 
was at this latter place that William Hilton was born on the 
3rd of June, 1786. He and his sister were the only survivors 
out of a family of five children. The boy was destined for a 
trade by his father, who had probably not found art very 
profitable in his own case, but this young man's desire to 
become a painter was so great that here again the father 



yielded, and the son having become an excellent draughtsman 
under his tuition, was placed by his father with J, R. Smith, 
with whom he was well acquainted, in order that he might 
continue his art education under the best auspices. 

Hilton, though considerably younger than De Wint, had already 
been eighteen months at work in town when the latter came to 
London. Poor Hilton must have gone through a somewhat 
trying experience, passing from a quiet country town and the 
care of a devoted and affectionate mother, to the rather 
rollicking and careless household of the mezzotint engraver ; 
and till young De Wint arrived in town, Hilton's life was 
anything but a happy one. Then, indeed, a pleasant time 
must have begun for both young men, their friendship daily 
augmenting through the unifying bond of a similar pursuit, 
and their tastes strengthening with their growth and uniting 
them always more and more to each other. 

Their master seems to have been much satisfied with their 
artistic progress, and he encouraged them in sketching, often 
taking them with him when he went on his frequent fishing ex- 
peditions. Throughout life De Wint was passionately devoted 
to sketching, and his enthusiasm for it never died out, nor did 
his pleasure in it ever fade. Smith seems to have soon dis- 
covered that the bent of neither young men led them towards 
the art of engraving, and it would appear that he did not compel 
them to attempt it. On the contrary, he encouraged them 
in portrait painting, and in the practice of going at once to 
Nature. * At the time De Wint lived with J. R. Smith, he was, 
as we have seen, residing in King Street, Covent Garden. 
Here De Wint's indentures were signed on the 7th June, 1806, 
imd he bound himself to stay an extra year with Smith after his 
apprenticeship was over, because that engraver took him without 
a premium. 




After the fellow-pupils had worked together about a year 
with their master, several circumstances occurred in his family 
to make the friends so uncomfortable that Hilton resolved to 
run away, his fellow-conspirator on this occasion being no 
doubt De Wint, who was of course deep in his friend's confi- 
dence, and who also naturally refused to break his vow of 
secresy, or to give his master any clue to Hilton's whereabouts. 
The engraver, furious with what he deemed the contumacy of 
his pupil, had him up before a magistrate, and the young man 
was sent to prison. Here the modern Damon was at first very 
harshly treated, and, but for the kindness of a woman who had 
been in the employment of the Smiths, might have suffered 
much from the cold. However, De Wint's relatives hearing of 
his sad plight soon came to his rescue, while Hilton, safe at 
Lincoln with his parents, was in despair at his friend's position. 
After mutual explanations, Hilton returned to his master, De 
Wint was liberated from his prison, and complimented on his 
devoted friendship, and the lads were afterwards better treated 
and more diligently attended to by the Smith family than they 
had previously been. 

Their apprenticeship, however, came to an end much sooner 
than was expected, as the two young men resolved to learn 
their art and to earn their bread at the same time. Perhaps 
Hilton's success in getting a picture hung at the Royal Academy 
Exhibition may have had something to do with this decision to 
set up for themselves; anyhow, De Wint engaged to paint eighteen 
oil pictures, nine the first year and nine the second, of certain 
specified sizes, for Smith, in lieu of the four years cancelled, 
and of the extra year's work which he had promised when first 
apprenticed, and this new arrangement our painter faithfully 
carried out. 

The close of De Wint's apprenticeship was signalised by a 



visit to Hilton's parents at Lincoln, his first view of the city 
which inspired so many of his happiest efforts. The Hiltons 
had a house near the wall of Lincoln Castle, and to it was 
attached a garden from whence there was a beautiful view, and 
a fine opportunity for studying skies ; a chance of which De 
Wint was not slow to avail himself. It was during this visit 
that he first saw his future wife. What a pretty picture comes 
before us ! Imagine the shy, slender, dark-haired young painter 
introduced by his best friend to his only sister, a rosy, fresh 
and blue-eyed maiden. Imagine the sister first seeing the 
friend so dear to her only brother ; one who had suffered so 
much in that brother's cause that he had actually dared to go 
to prison for his sake ! Youth and love and romance all 
combining in a holiday glow of sunshine and domestic happi- 
ness ! For the Hiltons were a most united and harmonious 
family, much more so from the smallness of their home circle 
than the larger family of the De Wints could possibly be. 
Harriet Hilton was at home for the holidays when the young 
painters arrived ; she Avas at that sweet age fifteen, in the 
first dawn of opening womanhood, not a child and yet not 
grown up : — 

"Standing with reluctant feet, 
Where the brook and river meet, 
Womanhood and childhood fleet ! " 

What wonder that young De Wint should lose his heart, or that 
the maiden should respond to his affection ? At any rate the 
foundation was then laid of an enduring love between them 
which only grew deeper with each year of their lives. 

Harriet Hilton was at school with a lady greatly celebrated 
at that day, a friend of her father's living in Leicester, who 
became known to the elder Hilton while he too was residing in 
that town. This was a Miss Linwood, an artist in needlework^ 

F 2 



who in her time enjoyed a great reputation for her tapestry 
copies of the Old Masters ! Alas! her collection, though ex 
hibited in London, brought her more popularity than profit, and 
it was disposed of after her death for a mere old song. Harriet 
Hilton was a favourite pupil, and was allowed to sit by her 
mistress's side in play hours, and to read aloud to her during 
her labours while the learned lady tapestried a Raphael. This 
pleasant talent of being a good reader Harriet Hilton retained 
through life, and she exercised it frequently for the benefit of 
her husband during her married years. She had a sweet voice, 
that " excellent thing in woman," and knew how to use it. 

From Lincoln De Wint made a walking tour through Derby- 
shire to his native county, and here he was again joined by 
Hilton, and both young men painted several portraits, which 
no doubt, as they were neither of them at all affluent, they 
found a great help to the common purse, apparently kept by 
them at this time. 

Dr. De Wint was now well off", and standing well in his 
profession, he was doubtless able to help his son Peter and his 
friend by getting them commissions for portraits, as from his 
duties as a medical man he must naturally have had a large 
circle of friends. He died about two years after this, in 1807, 
and his eldest son, who seems to have been the reverse of an 
amiable character, took possession of everything, and though 
he had a lucrative profession appears to have been unable to 
help his family. 

Peter De Wint, though only twenty-three, had to assist his 
younger brother and sisters, and afterwards his mother, who, 
but for the conduct of her elder son, ought to have been inde- 
pendent of her children. After this son's death she lived at 
Ancaster with her youngest son Thomas, who was also a 
doctor, and who died in 185 1. 


Holiday time over, the two young men returned to London 
for the winter, and settled in apartments in Broad Street, 
Golden Square. They were on the best of terms with their 
late master, who seems to have been in the main a generous- 
minded man. He probably helped them in the disposal of 
their works, and gave them sound advice. Hilton was already 
a student of the Royal Academy. De Wint was admitted 
later, in March, 1809, but it was not till two years afterwards 
that he entered the Life School of the Academy, on the 
1 6th March, 181 1 ; his card being endorsed by Fuseli as 
keeper, and W. Beechey as visitor. He was then a married 

The friends spent their Sundays about this period with an 
aunt of De Wint's, a Mrs. Brooks, her son being the intimate 
friend of both young men. This son afterwards took Holy 
Orders, and became in his later years a Canon of Lincoln. 
Probably it was partly through his influence that De Wint 
imbibed that strongly religious habit of thought which charac- 
teri'zed his whole life. 

The fear of an invasion of England by the French under 
Napoleon was one of the scares of that time, and we find the 
three young men, like good patriots, all enrolled as volunteers 
in the St. Margaret and St. John's Corps, though the date of 
their entrance is not given. 



In 1809 Hilton suffered from a serious attack of fever, and 
his mother and sister came up to town to help to nurse him 
through it. An incident occurred during this illness which 
might have proved very unfortunate for De Wint. He was 
sitting up one night with his friend, and instead of administer- 
ing his medicine to him, De Wint gave him by mistake a 
glass of vinegar. " Oh ! " cried the patient, " that is not the 
medicine; you have killed me." Poor De Wint immediately 
rushed off to consult the doctor, who lived at some distance 
from their lodgings. On his way he passed Drury Lane 
Theatre, which was just at that moment bursting into flames, 
for it was the very night upon which it was burnt down. The 
people who met De Wint rushing along naturally concluded 
that he was running to give the alarm of fire, and kept stopping 
him to inquire where it was, and all about it. These delays 
only added to his distress, but at last he reached his goal, and 
to his great joy learned that his unauthorised dose would do 
the patient no harm. 

Hilton went down to Lincoln to recover, but he had a relapse 
there which nearly cost him his life. While Hilton was away, 
De Wint moved his rooms to Carburton Street, and here he 
continued diligently working and giving lessons in water-colour 
drawing. He had been introduced ere this, as early as 1806, 
to Dr. Monro, the patron of so many disdnguished painters, 
but whether he worked for the doctor on the same terms as did 
Turner, Girtin, Cozens, and others is not known ; at any rate 
he must have enjoyed the fine water-colour drawings to be 
seen in Dr. Monro's portfolios. 

In 1809, when living with Hilton, in Norton Street, 
Portland Road, De Wint became an Associate of the Society 
of Painters in Water- Colours, which had that season removed 
from its gallery in Old Bond Street to a larger one in Spring 


Gardens. The society had at that time only twenty-four 
members, and they did very well while the exhibition was a 
novelty, from 1805 to 1813. For the last year or two, however, 
of this period the profits fell off, and some of the members 
becoming panic-stricken, called a general meeting, at which it 
was resolved to dissolve the society. Twelve members, how- 
ever, more courageous than the rest (De Wint was not one of 
them), immediately re-united and determined to continue the 
exhibition ; this they did with varying but eventual success, 
and subsequently when located in the rooms they at present 
occupy in Pall Mall East, De Wint again joined the society, and 
became one of the most steady contributors to its exhibitions. 

On the i6th of June, 1810, De Wint married Harriet Hilton, 
and after spending a six weeks' honeymoon in London, he 
went down to pass the summer at Lincoln with his wife and 
her family, only leaving it to make a short sketching excursion 
into Yorkshire. The winter found the De Wints and Hilton 
again settled in town, and the two painters at work and busy 
in Percy Street. In this home seventeen years passed happily 
by, during this period Hilton produced his finest pictures, and 
De Wint became more and more known as a water-colour 
painter and as a drawing-master of great capacity. The only 
drawback to his happiness lay in the delicacy of his wife's 
health, which after the birth of a little daughter, their only 
child, in 1811, for some time gave him much uneasiness. 

This cause probably led him to spend his summers at Lincoln, 
varied only by occasional visits to the country houses of his 
pupils; for he made many friends among those to whom he 
taught his art, and he enjoyed sketching and visiting in many 
lovely neighbourhoods where they resided, being always 
accompanied on these occasions by his wife and child, without 
whom he could seldom be induced to stir from home. 



Either his strong domestic affections, or his real love of 
English landscape, prevented De Wint from ever caring to go 
abroad or to paint foreign scenery, and though he did pass a 
short time in Normandy in 1828, he declared himself much 
disappointed with it. In reference to this trip he used often 
jokingly to remark that he had never seen Brighton look 
beautiful but once, and that was when he saw it from the 
vessel in which he was returning home from Dieppe. 

He refused many advantageous offers of going abroad, and 
steadily rejected all the inducements urged upon him to try 
foreign landscape. His love of English scenery was on the 
other hand extremely catholic, though perhaps Northern 
scenery may have had more attractions for him than that 
nearer home. Still, he saw many beauties in Norfolk and 
Suffolk, which were not at that time certainly deemed beautiful 
counties, and he knew and delighted in Shropshire, North 
Wales, and Gloucester. 

His celebrated work " The Cricketers," which we have 
reproduced on p. 87, and which forms part of the Historical 
Collection at South Kensington, is taken from a Surrey scene ; 
Leith Hill occupies the middle distance and the peasants are 
playing their favourite game on Ockley Green. In this work, 
which may be regarded as a type of his more finished compo- 
sitions, he loses somewhat of the freshness and charm of his 
open-air sketches. The sky has sadly faded, and the tone in 
consequence is hot and a trifle foxy. The foliage in the middle 
distance is massed according to his wont, but the hills and the 
lines of extreme distance are delicately touched in, though here, 
again, the red tint is too obtrusive. It will be seen that a figure 
of one of the cricketers, too near the foreground, has been erased, 
and the repainting of this and a defect in the sky now tell out too 
strongly, owing to abrasion of the surface. There is a richness 



in the colouring and an exquisite mellowness in the tone of 
this picture which cannot fail to charm the observer, and by 
us it will ever be regarded as one of the most valued master- 
pieces of the earlier period of water-colour art. 

Yorkshire and parts of Derbyshire were probably the places 
De Wint knew best after Lincoln. He was a great admirer 
of the Thames, and he made many studies on the Trent ; he 
ever loved 

" . . .a full-fed river winding slow, 
By herds upon an endless plain." 

He delighted in Ludlow, its castle and river; in Bridgnorth, 
with its pleasant old brick houses and its winding steps; in 
Lancaster with its castle ; he loved to paint Tintem, Carnar- 
von, and Conway, and many historic country seats. He went 
frequently to Lowther Castle, Lord Lonsdale being one of his 
patrons. Bolton Abbey he often visited, and always with 
increasing delight. He first saw it in 1814 from Farnley Hall, 
when staying with Mr. Fawkes. He spent many happy weeks 
at Castle Rising in Norfolk, where the Greville Howards lent 
him their house during the autumn of many years ; from thence 
he visited Hunstanton with the curious old mansion of the 
L'Estranges, and its bold sea-coast and parti-coloured white 
and red rocks. From having seen bad drawings of Wales 
when quite a young man, he had an idea that he should not 
like the scenery, but while stopping at Oakley Park near 
Ludlow, with Mr. and Lady Mary Windsor Clive, he was 
induced to go on into Wales, and he ever after thought most 
highly of it. He was introduced into Powis Castle one fine 
summer evening at sunset, and he never forgot the grand im- 
pression left upon his mind. His last visit to the principality 
was to the mountainous districts of Carnarvonshire and 
Merionethshire in 1835, when he took cold from too ardent 



sketching, and, as his wife thought, laid the foundation ot the 
disease from which he died. 

De Wint, as we have said before, was passionately fond of 
sketching out of doors, and very probably in his enthusiastic 
delight in his subject, he often sat longer than was prudent, 
and moreover remained out at times when our variable and 
changeable climate rendered sitting on a camp-stool near the 
damp ground exceedingly dangerous. For though he was 
accustomed on first going into the country after the London 
season, to take a whole week's holiday before he began his 
sketching, it must be remembered that he left town exhausted 
by the constant strain of teaching, which he did continuously 
during the spring and summer of each year from nine in the 
morning till six in the evening, taking only about an hour's 
rest in the middle of the day. He had what would be called 
a " first-rate " teaching connection, and it was among his 
pupils that his most lasting and valuable friendships were 
formed. It was somewhat late in life that he was introduced 
to Mr. Richard Ellison, of Sudbrook Holme, who became one 
of his best patrons, and who left some of the finest works 
in his collection to the South Kensington Museum. 

De Wint does not seem to have cared much for the sea, 
though that he could paint it with much skill is proved by a 
beautifully fresh and breezy little sea piece with a boat in the 
foreground, now in the possession of his grand-daughter Miss 
Tatlock. He sometimes visited Sherringham, then a small 
hamlet on the Norfolk coast near Cromer, and he had a 
special liking for the sailors of that village, considering them 
a fine manly race, simple and religious. 

Throughout life he took a great interest in gipsies ; he used 
to say that they were always to be found in picturesque places. 
To him they invariably behaved with great civility, and he was 



in the habit of visiting them and making finished studies of 
their tents and implements. There was something romantic 
about their history, and much that was quaint and paintable 
in the details of their wandering life, which had a fascination 
for the painter, and he would go long distances at any time 
to meet with them in their favourite haunts. 

De Wint was in the habit of making many drawings of 
figures to place in his finished works, for which these studies 
of gipsies must at times have proved most useful. A school 
friend of his daughter's remembers sitting to him in his studio 
for a gleaner in a harvest-field, when two pillows did duty as 
sheaves of corn. 


hi tJie Sottih Kt')isi7igt07i JMiiseiiyn, 


Before going on with the placid and uneventful details of 
De Wint's life, it will be as well perhaps in this chapter to give 
some account of his art, his method of work, and his manner of 
teaching. We have seen that his bent, notwithstanding the fact 
that he was apprenticed to a crayon-painter and engraver, was 
towards landscape art, and this he practised during his whole 
life, both in oil and water-colour. His water-colours, however, 
were so much more numerous and so much better known than 
his works in oil, that it is a surprise to most people to learn 
that he ever used this latter medium. Yet it is undoubtedly 
true that he may be said never to have given up painting in 
oil, and in the first few years of this century he certainly 
exhibited oil pictures at the exhibitions of the Royal Academy. 
Even as late as 1828 we find an oil picture by him, "Vessels 
in a Fog," placed on the walls of its exhibitions. Still, he 
was not a frequent contributor, and assuredly he received no 
patronage for his works in oil. They were all placed in an 
upper room in his house in Gower Street, and a visitor to 



them had to go up a very narrow and indifferent staircase if 
he wished to see them. 

In the diary of the autlior's father, it is noted, under 15 
March, 1872 : " Mrs. Tatlock,De Wint's daughter, has this day 
kindly allowed me to select for the South Kensington Museum 
twelve water-colour sketches from nature, the work of her 
father. She has besides given me two fine large oil paintings, 
and two smaller oil paintings. These are the first oil paintings 
by De Wint I have seen.'' These two pictures, which now 
occupy a place of honour at South Kensington, were originally 
offered to the National Gallery, but Sir W. Boxall, the then 
director, refused them, owing, as he alleged, to want of space. 
They will always hold their own as fine works, and are marked 
by De Wint's particular manner and style, which is distinct 
enough from that of his contemporaries to prove his originality 
as an artist. Their treatment is unlike in most ways what 
we should expect from a water-colour painter, though there 
are some indications in both works that they are painted by 
a man accustomed to lay on his colour in washes. There 
is less impasto and less executive handling than there 
would have been, probably, had De Wint been only an oil 
painter. In his way he seems to have as much feeling for 
English scenery as had Constable, and it is a curious fact that 
Constable too seems to have always had a sympathy for De 
Wint's art, and was the only painter who was a purchaser of 
his works. There is a likeness in unlikeness to each other 
which is difficult to account for ; though De Wint has not the 
brilliancy and dash of Constable's work, he has an equal feeling 
for an effect which, however, he obtains by less drastic powers 
of the brush and palette-knife. 

The better of the two pictures in the South Kensington 
Gallery both in subject and handling is perhaps " A Cornfield." 



It depicts a sultry day with a not improbable shower threaten- 
ing in the sky, which is most luminously treated. The harvesters 
are hastening to carry the corn, but yet some of the reapers 
have time to refresh themselves, sitting under the scanty shade 
afforded by the sheaves of corn. The shadows, thrown by the 
figures on the right, show the intense heat of the day. In the 
mid-distance a river winds by lovely woods, while grazing flocks 
add interest to the scene. The figures stand out as brilliant 
bits of jewelled light and dark. The perfect melting away into 
the plain of the distance of the flat, yet rich country, and the 
fine harmony of sunlight is very beautiful. 

" A Woody Landscape," the second of the oil paintings, is 
the stronger in effect, in light and dark, and in rich sober 
tones of colouring, but it has not the glow of sunlight of the 
other work. The rugged path in the foreground is a carefully 
studied piece of painting, and the flowers and weedage on 
the right are well drawn, and painted without littleness. A 
horseman, a thoroughly countrified figure, on a white pony, 
with two dogs, rides forward along the path. The mid-distance 
is rich in rolling woods, and a serene river flows along it, while 
the wide plain beyond gradually loses itself into the sky. 

Miss Tatlock possesses an oil picture by her grandfather, 
from a scene in Lincoln, which has the brilliancy and finish of a 
Dutch work. It shows a canal running through a street of old 
red brick houses ; the light on the water seen through the arch 
over which the houses are built, is very lovely. She has also two 
large oil paintings, one of which resembles the wooded land- 
scape at the South Kensington Museum, Who can tell how 
much may have been lost to art by De Wint's pursuit of water- 
colours rather than oil. He had made up his mind early in life 
that he must live by his art, and he chose that medium which 
enabled him best to do so, without misgiving and without regret. 



His method in water-colours was very simple. He used 
as a rule only ten pigments : — 

Indian red and Prussian blue he used in a special prepara- 
tion. Alas ! Indian red has sometimes, as in the " Cricketers," 
eaten away the blues in his work, and indigo is not a safe colour 
to paint with. He was so conservative in his mode of paint- 
ing that he could not reconcile himself to modern innova- 
tions, or what he considered as such. His daughter told the 
author's father that he did not like and would not use moist 
colours, but preferred the simple cake-colours in vogue in his 
youth, though it would seem as if moist colours would have 
been most suitable to his manner. 

De Wint made a practice of painting on ivory-tinted Cres- 
wick paper, which he kept rather wet. This paper has a 
somewhat coarse surface, and this surface he contrives shall 
give a texture to his flat masses, and hide any deficiency 
of handling. A rough surface is also of value in giving the 
appearance of finish with little labour. He laid in his effect 
at once in broad flat washes, and he had a fine sense of 
colour, and a most keen appreciation of the tints and har- 
monies of nature, which his rich and flowing brush enabled 
him to carry out swiftly, with great freshness and purity. 
De Wint rarely flattened his tints by stippling, though he 
occasionally resorted to broad hatchings in his skies. He 
objected strongly to the use in his works of body colour or 
white, but he now and again forced the high lights of his 
figures into sharpness by touches of solid white. 

Yellow Ochre. 
Indian Red. 
Purple Lake. 

Prussian Blue. 

Brown Pink. 
Burnt Sienna. 



This is very observable in the cattle of his picture of 
"Nottingham" in the South Kensington Museum. He also 
at times took out high lights, but as a rule he avoided those 
executive processes which other painters have resorted to in 
order to gain effect in their pictures. His handling and execu- 
tion are not his strong points, and perhaps on this very account 
there is a breadth and tone about his masses of foliage which 
is so true that we cannot regret the omission of details. He 
introduced figures plentifully into his landscapes, using them 
as a landscape painter should do, as enhancing points of 
colour, leading the eye into the picture. They are always well 
placed and effective as to light and shade, and supply bright 
and jewelled bits of colour, even though they may be some- 
times a little defective in drawing. In his feeling for breadth 
and in the fine sense of colour De Wint's water-colour art is 
truly original. 

With regard to his teaching, it was probably in advance of 
the usual drawing lessons of that day. After making his pupil 
study a group of any objects which came conveniently to his 
hand, piled together, often with a white cloth thrown against 
them, which he had to imitate with as mu'ch attention as 
possible to their general effect, he carried the young draughts- 
man direct to Nature, making him afterwards endeavour to 
produce from his sketch a more finished picture ; De Wint 
in the meanwhile always helped the beginner with advice and 
sometimes practically with his brush. 

Many of De Wint's sketches seem to have more freshness 
and ease than his more elaborate and finished compositions,. 
The very onceness of his sketches made out of doors has in it 
a most peculiar charm. Yet we know that he looked upon 
his sketches as mere material for his winter's work of making 
finished pictures. Of these each returning year he sent many 



to the exhibition of the Old Water-Colour Society, disposing 
sometimes of more than half their number before sending them 
in to the gallery. When he first started in art, De Wint used 
to be paid about five guineas apiece for his finished water- 
colour drawings, and five shillings a lesson was his fee for 
teaching drawing ; but we find him gradually raising his terms, 
and receiving in 1827 as much as fifty guineas for a water- 
colour drawing, and a guinea a lesson from his pupils. 

The year 1827 is the first in which his wife kept an account 
of his works, and of how much he got for them ; the prices 
varying, as we have said, from five to fifty guineas. Since his 
death, as we know, the sums paid for his water-colours have 
risen, and a drawing for which he received thirty guineas has 
been sold for sixteen hundred and fifty pounds. 

De Wint has been reproached with being too fond of money. 
This may have been the case, but we must recollect that he 
started in life a poor man, that he married young and had 
his wife and child to maintain, and that what may now be 
considered in him a money-loving spirit may to him have 
appeared but a due regard to providing for his own household. 

The following anecdotes related of him surely tell both 
ways. One of his patrons objected to paying him in guineas, 
saying, " There are no guineas now, De Wint ; you mean 
pounds." "No," said the painter, "the pounds are mine, the 
shillings belong to my wife ; I always charge guineas for my 

In the next case also our sympathies are with the painter. 
He was accustomed, before sending in his works for exhibition 
to the old Water-Colour Society in Pall Mall, to have a show 
day at his own house, where his friends and patrons flocked to 
see and to buy. A wealthy friend often came into the painter's 
drawing-room on these show days, for it was round this room 



that he arranged his drawings, and would feelingly lament each 
succeeding year that this or that " perfect gem " was labelled 
sold, and that therefore he was unable to secure it for his own. 
He was right in this, for it became increasingly usual with 
De Wint to sell his pictures before they went into the exhi- 
bition ; one year as many as eighteen out of twenty-nine of the 
artist's works were sold before they reached the gallery in Pall 
Mall. But the painter after a time became tired of the pre- 
tended patron's ruse, and, his patience being exhausted, he laid 
a plot for the trickster. The show day came round once more, 
and so did the wealthy friend, and shortly he fell into raptures 
before two Httle drawings with the magic ticket upon them. 
" Now, De Wint," he cried, " those are exactly the things I 
should like to possess ; what a pity they are not to be had." 
" My dear sir," said the painter, slapping him on the shoulder, 
" I knew you would like them, so I put the tickets on to keep 
them for you ; " and the unwilling purchaser had to take them, 
too, " otherwise," said the painter, " I should have shown him 
the door." 

it jnust be remembered, moreover, on the other side of 
the question, that De Wint could act generously when it was a 
case of benefiting art in any way, as when he allowed the Royal 
Dublin Society to buy eight of his drawings for rather less than 
half the sum he would otherwise have obtained for them, and 
begged the Society to consider the other half of the money as 
his contribution towards their work. Three years after this, 
also, he generously made them a set of drawings for the use of 
their students, at a much lower rate of payment than he was in 
the habit of accepting. The fact is that while he was strictly 
honest, just, and upright in all his dealings, he had felt all his 
young life probably, the pinch of the want of money, and it 
is not to be wondered at that he was a little anxious about 


In the South Kensington Museum. 



acquiring and retaining what, from experience, he knew the 
value of. That this economical turn of mind was concurrent 
with considerable carelessness may be gleaned from the fact 
that one of his best works, " The Cricketers," was found with 
another finished drawing strained over it, after the painter's 
death. It is supposed that the drawing, not having sold in the 
exhibition, was used by De Wint as a mount for a fresh piece 
of paper, pasted over the old strainer : so here again is an 
anecdote which tells both ways. 

De Wint had throughout life a great horror of picture- dealers. 
He used to say that he painted only for gentlemen, and had but 
one price ; implying, what was very true, that he had no wish for 
the good offices of the middleman, who of course, in any trans- 
action entered into with the artist, had always his own living to 
make out of the purchase. He relaxed this rigid rule a little 
in the latter years of his life (and after consultation with his 
wife), in favour of Mr. Vokins, who professed himself as always 
ready to pay the gentleman's price for any works which De 
Wint would allow him to buy. 

Another idiosyncrasy of De Wint's was that of scarcely ever 
signing either his name or his initials to any of his works. A 
signed picture by him is of extremely rare occurrence. In the 
late Sir J. Heron's collection there was an important drawing 
by him, " On the Yare," bearing a genuine signature and date ; 
but this is almost a unique instance. This picture, a fine one 
in many ways, was sold recently at Christie's for ,7^257. It is 
somewhat distantly similar in treatment and subject to a Cotman, 
and has a fine luminous sky reflecting into the river which 
flows out at the foreground. The signature in question is 
written in ink in the shadow on the left, and is as follows : 
"P. Dewint, 1811." It is curious that this way of spelling 
the name as one word is not even found in the Academy 

G 2 



Catalogue, and is never used now. De Wint himself probably- 
abandoned it in his early manhood, in favour of the more 
ordinary method of writing the signature. The painter used to 
assert with much veracity to those of his purchasers who 
pressed him to add his autograph to his works, that his 
pictures were "signed all over." He was veiy right in this, 
for there are few artists whose sign-manual is so readily 
apparent in their pictures as is that of De Wint. 

In the National Gallery, in Trafalgar Square, there are now 
twenty-two drawings by De Wint, forming the Henderson 
bequest. They are placed in a room through the Turner 
water-colour rooms, and though the light is not good, so few 
people take advantage of the gift that there is always ample 
space and opportunity for examinmg them. 

There are two of these works which are exceedingly 
interesting and valuable, owing to the fact that one is the 
sketch, and the other the finished drawing, of the same subject. 
The scene represented is at Bray on the Thames, and the 
central point of the composition is the old church tower and its 
reflection in the brimming water. The feeling of the ripple of 
the river is equally good in both works. The sketch is taken 
on a somewhat grey day. In the finished work, however, the 
tone is altogether warmer. The trees in the mid-distance are 
touched in with various colours, those in the sketch are put in 
at once with a full brush and in one tint. The sketch has not 
much foreground, in the picture the foreground has been most 
carefully studied. It is rich in weeds, docks, and bulrushes, 
all probably taken from varied sketches, studies from Nature 
which the painter kept by him for this very purpose. A large 
barge, with a mast tall enough to cut the further edge of the 
water and thus to break the long river line, has been inserted in 
the picture, where in the sketch there is but a small boat. The 



sky in the finished work has faded ; the onceness with which the 
cloudy sky of the sketch was put in, has saved its brilHancy, 
and in this respect it has fared better than that of the picture, 
where much more pains have been taken. 

Another fine work is the " Lincoln Cathedral from the 
Castle Moat." Here the central point is the tower of the 
cathedral, most elaborate in drawing, which stands out boldly in 
brilliant sunlight. Though there is a great deal of finished 
detail in the foreground, in the shrubs and weedage growing in 
the moat, the painter has thrown it all into shadow, preserving 
the broad masses of light and shade, and accentuating the 
cathedral tower as the part of the work which is to keep and 
strike the eye of the spectator. 

The " Cottage and Harvesters," is another bold sketch in 
which the masses are capitally given. De Wint has recognised 
the point that makes our old English cottages and farmsteads 
so picturesque, namely, the pitch of the roof, when it is well 
calculated with respect to the rest of the building. If the 
proportions are harmonious, the simplest forms at once become 
agreeable to the eye. Here the cottage is all in shade, but it 
is a pleasant mass, finely supported by old trees. The linen 
hanging out on the right allows opportunely for a bit of sharp 
white, while two old peasants binding up the sheaves in the 
foreground, give the human touch which is wanted to make a 
landscape interesting. The sky of this work is a grand cloud 

Another drawing, " Ruins of Lincoln Castle," is inclined to 
sombreness, but it is noticeable from its largeness of execution 
and its finely-given masses, in which the details are rendered 
without littleness. Some of De Wint's drawings here are a 
little black ; they have probably darkened with time. The 
'■' Westmoreland Hills bordering the Ken," with the snow on 



the mountains in the distance, is unlike De Wint's usual 
handling, but is a very interesting sketch ; he has left the fore- 
ground unfinished. 

One or two of the sketches here shown are probably works 
done with pupils. There are also two small ones in the South 
Kensington Gallery which we should think must have been 
undertaken at the same time with some beginner to show him 
how to study from Nature. They are entitled " Chelsea Church 
from Gore Lane," and " Brompton Church" from the same 
place. It is interesting and almost pathetic to see the pleasant 
hayfields and hedgerow-elms, and the market-gardens occupying 
the space which is now covered by the dismal hideousness of 
stuccoed houses, in the worst of builder's taste, at present 
known as Queen's Gate. Gore Lane once ran along the side 
of the gardens of Gore and Grove Houses, whose occupiers, 
Lady Blessington and Count D'Orsay, were such notorious 
personages in their day. The fine trees which bordered their 
large gardens are seen to the left in one of De Wint's sketches. 

After " The Cricketers," perhaps one of De Wint's finest 
water-colours at South Kensington is " Lincoln Cathedral," 
illustrated by us in reduced fac-simile on p. 8i. This picture 
forms a part of the Ellison bequest. It is a study of the 
place itself, and must have had at the time quite a topo- 
graphical interest, though this is not a quality usually to be 
admired in a work of art. . The skill with which the artist has 
introduced, or rather left out, his whites in the picture, is very 
striking. The houses on the left, their whiteness shining out in 
the sunlight, and still further relieved by the white pigeons 
against the stormy sky, are very broadly given. Then the 
white is very dexterously carried round and out to the fore- 
ground of the work by the white horse in the market-cart, the 
woman's apron, and the heap of turnips lying in the market- 



place in the foreground. A curious example of how a fine 
colourist can give a sense of colour without absolutely using 
the brilliant forces of his palette, can be seen in the same 
gallery in De Wint's drawing of " Haddon Hall.", The sunlight 
is very vivid ; one feels it is a warm bright summer day, and 
yet, as respects colour, the work may almost be said to be a 
subject in black and white only. 

The sky in his picture of " Nottingham " — reproduced as 
the headpiece to this chapter — which hangs near to the 
" Haddon Hall," has luckily remained almost as bright and 
fresh as when it left De Wint's hands; the blue has cer- 
tainly been preserved intact. This is not the case with 
another work in the South Kensington Gallery, " The Snow- 
drift," where the Indian red has almost played as much havoc 
as it has in the sky of " The Cricketers." No work we 
have seen by De Wint is more brilliant and sunny than this 
view of Nottingham from the valley of the Trent. The town 
stands out on high ground on the left of the picture, in the 
middle distance the river is spanned by a stone bridge of 
many arches. There is a charming tract of sunlit lowland 
country, through which the river winds in shine and shadow, 
and the water in the foreground luminously reflects the sky, 
one of De Wint's most delightful cloud studies. 

Our illustration of the "Hay Harvest" at p. 71, probably 
an early work by De Wint, also forms part of the Kensington 
collection, though not placed among the historical series of 

Another sketch by De Wint in the collection at South 
Kensington, "The Stonebow, Lincoln," an admirable study 
of the ancient gateway, is reproduced at p. 83. The glimpse 
of the street beyond is well given, and the figures, as usual, 
are appropriately introduced. 


The excellent private collection of Mr. James Orrock, which 
we have already placed under contribution in the memoir of 
David Cox, has furnished us with three charming specimens of 
De Wint's art. Of these the most important is the " Cows in 
Water," illustrated on p. 91. Here we see the artist at his 
best, and we can study the ease and delicacy with which he 
treats the distant landscape, and his characteristic handling of 
foliage. The group of trees on the right are admirable in 
modelling, but they fail somehow to impress us with an accurate 
regard for nature. There is a feeling that composition has 
been carefully attended to in the work, and that it is not done 
out of doors. The water, both that falling over the weir and 
the broad expanse in the foreground, is handled with great 
knowledge and dexterity. The Welsh sketch of " Landoc 
Bridge " which we have reproduced at p. 77, is a much more 
rapid transcript of nature, evidently painted out of doors. The 
view of "Aysgarth Force," p. 65, is quite in De Wint's 
earlier manner, and is a bold and effective study of a rocky 

Our illustration of " Richmond Hill," at p. 99, is from an 
engraving by W. B. Cooke, after a drawing by De Wint. 
The works of this artist have been on several occasions engraved 
in books descriptive of picturesque scenery or places of historic 
interest. Indeed at one time De Wint was much employed 
by the publishers, and his drawings lend themselves well to 
reproduction in this way. 

It is pleasant to be able to see such good examples of so 
original a painter in our two great national collections ; and as 
water-colour is an art which has ever an increasing number of 
followers, it is certain that the De Wints, in both galleries, will 
attract an always-widening circle of students. 


In 1819, De Wint's father-in-law, the elder Hilton, paid a visit 
to London, accompanied by his wife. He was then in declining 
health, but he was much cheered during his stay in Percy Street 
by the congratulations he received on all sides on account 
of his relationship with two such distinguished painters. His 
own admiration of their performances was very real ; he was 
proud and happy in their success, and made a point of col- 
lecting and carefully preserving any scraps of their drawings 
which he found lying about. He had also another taste which 
he was able to gratify, a love of engravings, a very fine collec- 
tion of which he bequeathed to his children. He died Sept. 7th, 
1822, having just completed his seventy-eighth year, and his 
death was the first real grief his son and daughter ever knew. 

After this Mrs. Hilton passed most of the winters in London 
with her children, they in return spending their summers and 
autumns principally with her at Lincoln. The De Wint's little 
only daughter lived during her childhood almost entirely with 
her grandmother, as Mrs. De Wint's delicate health obliged 
her to be a good deal separated from her child. The years 
spent in the Percy Street house were years of real progress and 
advancement in art for both De Wint and his brother-in-law. 

In 1813, Hilton had been elected an Associate of the Royal 
Academy, and he became a full member in 1819. in 
company with a brother academician, T. Phillips, R.A., he 



visited Italy, and he was away from England for six months, 
having at last an opportunity of seeing and studying the great 
masterpieces of the Italian Schools. Before this he had only 
been to Paris at the time of the Peace, previous to Napoleon's 
escape from Elba, when of course he visited the Louvre, and 
examined the many pictures which the emperor had there 
collected together. The sight of the wonders of Italy, how- 
ever, did not prevent Hilton from being very delighted to 
return to his native land ; he was quite as much devoted to 
home life as was De Wint. It was at this period that he 
produced his best pictures, and the grey shadows of want of 
encouragement and lack of appreciation, which darkened and 
saddened the end of his life, had not closed in around him. 

De Wint, who had chosen a simpler walk in art than Hilton, 
was more prosperous than his brother-in-law. Landscape art 
is more in conformity with the English taste than the historic 
style in painting. Nevertheless Hilton had in his friend a 
staunch supporter and a never-wearied admirer, and let us hope 
that friendship and family love cheered him, notwithstanding 
his disappointment in those higher walks of art for which his 
poetic temperament and his refined taste so surely fitted him, 

Hilton's marriage, in February 1828, to Justina, the eldest 
daughter of the Rev. G. D. Kent, of Lincoln, though it broke 
up the home in Percy Street, made no real difference in the 
united family relations. His appointment to the Keepfirship 
of the Royal Academy rendered it necessary, however, for him 
to live in the building, and he and his wife began their house- 
keeping at Somerset House as soon as possible after the 

De Wint and his wife removed to 40, Upper Gower Street, 
where they lived until the painter's death. They had always 
cherished the hope of spending the end of their days at Lincoln, 



and on this account had actually had the house there, at 
Motherby Hill, altered and enlarged ; yet, when the time came 
for removing there, the health of De Wint was so delicate 
that it was thought better that he should remain in London, 
both on account of the milder climate and the vicinity to good 
medical advice. 

Thus, to their great regret, the Lincoln house had to be 
disposed of, and the scene of so many sketches, and so many 
happy family gatherings, passed entirely out of their hands. 
Amongst Hilton's papers, after his death, was found a withered 
rose which he had gathered when he last visited his Lincoln 

Perhaps the greatest trial of the De Wints in the years 
which elapsed after Hilton's marriage, was the ill-health both 
of that painter and of his wife. Whether it was the close 
confinement consequent upon his duties as keeper, or his 
disappointment about his art, which operated upon a naturally 
pensive and melancholy temperament, or whatever it may 
have been, Hilton's health gradually grew worse, and he 
seemed to droop and fade away. In 1832 he had a very 
severe illness in consequence of some disagreement and disap- 
pointment about a picture, and his life was despaired of. From 
this, however, he ralUed; but two years later, in 1834, an aunt 
of his wife's having died rather suddenly, he went with Mrs. 
Hilton and his mother to pay a visit at Christmas-time to the 
bereaved husband. On arriving at the house of mourning they 
discovered, what they had not before known, that the aunt had 
died from scarlet fever. Hilton and his mother both took the 
complaint, and his wife became ill from other causes. 

When Mrs. Hilton, senior, had sufficiently recovered, she 
went to the De Wints in Upper Gower Street, where shortly 
afterwards she was again taken ill, being attacked by the 



disease from which she died. She expired on Good Friday, 
April 19, 1835, in the arms of her son-in-law, De Wint, who 
had always cherished her widi the deepest affection. Her 
death happened at that trying moment when painters are 
harassed with the sending in of their pictures for the exhi- 

In the autumn of the same year, Hilton with his wife and 
sister went for a few weeks to Belgium, while De Wint and his 
family made an expedition into North Wales. The Hiltons 
returned by October i for the opening of the Academy Schools ; 
very shortly afterwards Mrs. Hilton became ill, and died sud- 
denly from what proved to be water on the brain. The De 
Wints, who were travelling about in Wales, received the melan- 
choly intelligence of her illness and death on one and the 
same day ; and though they returned with all speed to London 
from Powis Castle, where they were staying, they only reached 
town on the afternoon of the day of the funeral. They found 
poor Hilton overwhelmed with grief, and from this time his 
spirits sank more and more, while he suffered greatly from 
asthma and disease of the heart. 

In December, 1838, he left the hot rooms of the Royal 
Academy and most imprudently travelled outside the coach 
to Kingston, to visit an uncle of his wife's, who was ill and 
who had sent for him. Owing to this he took a severe chill, 
and though he tried change of air with his niece and sister at 
Matlock, and also a smaller change by removing from Trafalgar 
Square to Maida Hill, he never really rallied. On the 3rd of 
December in the following year he returned from Maida Hill to 
his sister's house in Upper Gower Street, to be with those he 
loved best. On the evening of that day he took to his bed- 
room, which he never again left, and he died on the 30th 
December, 1839. De Wint was with him at the supreme 



moment and closed his eyes, and thus was ended one of the 
most faithful friendships of which we have any record. 

We have seen that Hilton's art suffered from neglect during 
his lifetime. He had with great resolution devoted himself ex- 
clusively to history-painting, and was not tempted to turn aside 
from it by the gains of portraiture, or by any search after a more 
lucrative branch of art. Haydon mentions in his Diary that 
Hilton, when quite a young man, had been successful in selling 
his " Mary anointing the feet of Christ," for what was then 
considered the large sum of 500 guineas, which, says Haydon, 
with his usual exaggeration, saved him from ruin. 

Haydon was of course himself in difficulties, and he seems 
to have told his fellow-student that he was a lucky fellow. 
" How ?" said Hilton. " I explained my circumstances," adds 
Haydon, " and he immediately offered me a large sum to assist 
me. This was indeed generous ; I accepted only ^34, but his 
noble offer endeared him to me for the rest of his life. A 
more amiable creature never lived, nor a kinder heart, but 
there was an intellectual and physical weakness in everything 
he did." We are scarcely inclined to agree with Haydon's criti- 
cism, but certainly Hilton's pictures have suffered dreadfully 
from another and a fatal cause — the use of asphaltum — so that 
what in his work looked to a former generation fresh and 
beautiful, has necessarily now been entirely repainted, the 
original work having shrunk and corrugated together, and in 
some cases it has actually nearly slipped from the canvas. 

Miss Tatlock has in her dining-room a portrait of Mrs. De 
Wint and her own mother, painted before Hilton took to this 
unfortunate pigment, which seems almost as secure as when 
first painted, and which is a very good example of Hilton's art, 
and a pleasing portrait of " Mother and Child " in simple and 
graceful attitudes. 



Hilton's large work, " Sir Calepine rescuing Serena," ex- 
hibited in 1831, and his " Editha," which was at the Royal 
Academy the same year, have both nearly perished from his 
pernicious practice of mixing asphaltum with so many of his 
colours, and of using it so largely in his painting. This is the 
more unfortunate, as " Sir Calepine " was bought by subscription 
on the part of the Academy students, who loved and honoured 
Hilton as their teacher, and it was presented by them to the 
National Gallery; while his "Editha" at one time formed 
part of the Vernon Collection. Both these works are now no 
longer shown on the walls on account of their ruined condition. 

Hilton's funeral took place from his rooms at the Royal 
Academy on 7th January, 1840. The students, to whom he 
was always considerate and kind, and who had marked their 
high sense of the services he rendered them, by presenting him 
with a valuable piece of plate, were allowed to go in and to take 
a last look at him in his coffin. He was followed to his grave 
in the churchyard of the Savoy by the President and Council 
of the Academy, while his faithful friend De Wint officiated as 
chief mourner. Poor Hilton ! his latter years were passed not 
only in physical sickness, but in that grievous sickness that 
arises from hope deferred. Had his art been more prosperous, 
his bodily health might have been better, but he was naturally 
of a modest and retiring disposition — he felt things very 
acutely, and disappointment told upon his sensitive nature 
more than it would have done upon most men. 

De Wint was of a stronger mould ; he never had to encounter 
the same difficulties in the branch of art he had chosen ; his 
disposition was more irritable than pensive, and he had a 
stronger will and a greater courage to fight against the trials 
of life than his sensitive brother-in4aw had. Perhaps, too, he 
was assisted in this by his being what is popularly called " a 



good hater." Even in their external appearance there was a 
great difference between the two friends ; Hilton being pale 
and delicate- looking, with a high forehead and brown eyes, 
which were apt to shine with singular brilliancy when excited, 
while De Wint was of middle height, dark complexion, and in 
youth had very dark hair. 

It is a little difficult at this distance of time to know precisely 
what were De Wint's characteristics outside of his love of art 
and of his unfailing industry in the practice of it. He seems to 
have enjoyed his wife's reading exceedingly, and to have been 
a lover of poetry ; his pictures, especially in the latter years of 
his life, having generally some appropriate quotation attached 
to them. In speech De Wint was full of anecdote, and he en- 
livened his conversation with many pithy sayings ; and in his dis- 
position he was, though irritable, naturally cheerful. He does 
not seem to have associated very much with his brother-painters ; 
yet his wife, in a letter written some years after his death, 
laments rather feelingly that since she lost him she had seemed 
to drop out of the acquaintance of the painters, adding, " the 
happiest portion of my life has been mixed up with art and 
artists, but most of those I knew have passed away." Perhaps 
in some ways De Wint's deeply religious nature separated him 
from the more careless painters of his day. Some of them, we 
know, were not what he would have approved of as men, how- 
ever highly he might have thought of their art. 

Again, his constant intercourse with his pupils, and the 
society they moved in may have put him out of tune with the 
usual artist world. His religious feelings were throughout life 
very deep and earnest ; he would never begin his day's work 
without reading a portion of Scripture and writing out a prayer, 
and this practice he never omitted, even when travelling. He 
was also in the habit of conducting daily prayers with his house- 



hold. In his latter days he was much given to the perusal of 
hooks of devotion, and his religious life seemed only to grow- 
stronger with his advancing years. 

We have said that De Wint paid many visits to his pupils. 
There is a rather curious anecdote related concerning his stay 
at Badger, in Shropshire, with a favourite pupil and patron, Mr. 
H. Cheney, where on one occasion he declared that he knew 
from a certain oppression on his chest that there must be a fire 
in the house. He was so decided about this, asserting it in fact 
so vigorously, that his friends, though incredulous, instituted a 
search. However, this search proved for a long time a very 
fruitless one, and they were just about to abandon it, when 
the flames suddenly burst through the floor of one of the 
rooms, justifying De Wint's apprehensions. 

In the summer of 1843 De Wint went into Hampshire^ 
intending to remain there some time, and to devote himself to 
the scenery of the New Forest, a part of the country he had not 
before visited. He was accom.panied on this expedition by 
his wife and daughter, and a friend who was very fond of 
sketching. In order to please this friend, De Wint, contrary to 
his usual practice, set to work at once to sketch, fearing that 
he might disappoint his friend if he did not draw. He had 
had a very hard season's work teaching in London, and was 
rather worn out by his unceasing toil. The effort told upon 
his constitution, and this, added to the excitement and exertion 
of sketching, proved too much for his strength. The fatigue 
of walking to his sketch one hot morning, and the subsequent 
chill he got by sitting down to his work and continuing at it for 
too long a time, brought on a severe attack of bronchitis. 
This at the time nearly proved fatal, and from it, though he 
lived for six years afterwards, he never entirely recovered 
The attack came on at Christchurch, from thence he went to 



Lymington, where he became much worse, and it was with 
great difficulty that he managed to get home. 

The next year, 1844, his only daughter, Helen, married a 
friend and neighbour, a Mr. Tatlock. He was a man nearly 
as old as De Wint, but the marriage seems to have been a very 
happy one, and the birth of a little granddaughter cheered the 
last days of the painter. 

A few years before this date, De Wint had made an excur- 
sion as far as Lynton in Devon, and had greatly enjoyed the 
scenery there, as well as the pretty picturesque cottages of 
Minehead and Dunster, and the lovely bit of Somersetshire he 
had to pass through to reach Lynton. The last excursion of his 
life was also destined to be made into Devonshire. He had 
been very aiUng all through the year 1848, but in September 
he resolved to make an effort to get some country air, which 
his doctors believed might be beneficial for him, and the mild 
cHmate of Devon was suggested, though this probably did not 
really suit him. He felt better during the first few days of the 
change which he spent in the ancient city of Exeter, and he 
was able to sketch a good deal. He admired the city, and the 
venerable old cathedral ; De Wint loved a cathedral, and he 
had always cherished a vague hope, as we have said, of retiring 
altogether to Lincoln ; indeed, one of his day-dreams had been 
that he would attend the daily services in that cathedral. This, 
however, was not to be. 

On his departure from Exeter he went on to Totnes, at 
which place he became worse; seeing new scenery always 
excited him, and he greatly fatigued himself by walking about 
all day to explore the district. From Totnes he proceeded to 
Dartington to stay with Mr. Champerknowne ; here he remained 
-nearly a fortnight, and it was from the scenery of the Dart that 
he made his last sketch. He found himself so completely worn 




out and exhausted by this effort, that he concluded that he 
must not attempt to sketch again, and soon afterwards he 
returned to town to seek further medical advice. 

He continued in very. delicate health all the winter. On 
the 22nd of June he drove round the Regent's Park, by the 
recommendation of his doctors, and returned home very much 
exhausted. A day or two afterwards Drs. Tweedie and 
Chambers, who both saw him, pronounced him to be beyond 
hope of recovery, his disease being aggravated by slight 
paralysis. On the 30th of June, 1849, De Wint died at nine 
o'clock in the morning, having only kept his bed for one day. 
Throughout his long illness he was most carefully nursed and 
watched over by his wife. Theirs was an intense affection ; 
and such was their tender love towards each other, that neither 
could bear to mention the subject of their having ere long to 
part, and thus his death was never alluded to between them, 
though of course it must have been quite obvious to so 
devoted a nurse that his days were numbered. 

It is curious that the two friends, Hilton and De Wint, both 
died from the same complaint, heart disease. In their death 
they were not divided, for they were buried in the same tomb 
in the churchyard of the Savoy Chapel. De Wint's funeral took 
place on the 9th July ; he was in his sixty-sixth year when he 
died. The widow and sister placed a tablet to the united 
memory of the brother painters, in the Savoy Chapel, which 
was destroyed when the edifice was nearly burnt down in 1864. 
As the tablets were not allowed to be replaced when the 
church was restored, Mrs. De Wint gave instead the new font 
to the memory of the two friends. This font was the last work 
designed by Mr. Edward Blore, the distinguished architect and 
antiquary, who came out of his retirement to pay homage to 
his departed friends. It is of Caen stone, with a canopy of 



carved wainscot oak. Mrs. De Wint also erected a monument 
to her husband and brother in Lincoln Cathedral; an altar- 
tomb designed by Blore and executed by Forsyth. Three of 
the panels have bas-relief sculptures from Hilton's pictures, 
viz., "The Crucifixion," " The Raising of Lazarus" (a work 
which Hilton had given to the church in Newark in memory 
of his father), and " Mary anointing the feet of Christ." This 
last picture had been bought from Hilton by the British 
Institution, and it was presented by them to a church in the 

Mrs. De Wint survived her husband for many years. She 
wrote a short account of the two painters, which her grand- 
daughter has very kindly allowed us to make use of for this 
memoir. The lives of Hilton and De Wint were so closely con- 
nected together that it would be almost impossible to write an 
account of the one without also giving many details of the other. 
So true and lasting a friendship is not often to be found, for 
from the time that the painters met as youths in 1802, in the 
studio of J. R. Smith, until Hilton's appointment as keeper to 
the Royal Academy in 1828, they were never separated, 
excepting occasionally for a few weeks. In every respect 
they shared each other's joys and sorrows, and mutually 
assisted each other in those trials and disappointments incident 
to a painter's lot. Theirs was the affection so well described 
by Pope : — 

" A generous friendship no cold medium knows, 
Burns with one love, with one resentment glows." 

Hilton's marriage did not in the least affect these intimate 
mutual relations, and as we have seen, after his wife's death, 
he found his chief and best consolers in the De Wint family, 
and it was to their house he returned at last to pass away 

H 2 



among his own people, and to die in the arms of his best 

In the May following De Wint's death, about five hundred 
of his sketches, studies, and finished drawings, were sent to 
Christie's and sold. They would sell for a much larger sum 
in these days, but they fetched what was considered a very 
good price at that time. The sale realised about ^^2,364. 
At a later period a dealer bought several drawings by De 
Wint, hoping to make a profit by selling them again separately. 
He is said to have given ^4,000 for them. He was, however, a 
little before his time with the market, and, finding it a bad specu- 
lation, he brought an action against the vendors. Tayler and 
Cattermole were called in to give evidence as to the value of the 
water-colours, and Tayler used to relate how the counsel for the 
prosecution, taking up a drawing which he either considered 
or appeared to consider a mere daub, asked indignantly if the 
witness meant to set any value on such blots and smudges ; of 
course the witnesses, who knew their worth, persisted, and the 
plaintiff was non-suited. To what varying fortunes may not 
the works even of a talented artist be exposed ! 

De Wint has been more fortunate than Hilton in the 
medium in which he painted, though there are water-colours 
by him which have darkened, and others which have lost 
their pristine freshness, and there are a few sad cases where 
■one colour has eaten away another, and so destroyed the 
original intention of the painter. On the whole we can, how- 
ever, discern in all of them the artist's originality of aim, and 
his ample and large view of Nature. We can in all of them 
■enjoy his power of always catching the best possible point of 
view for his subject ; this is equally visible in his slightest 
sketches and in his most finished pictures. He seizes upon 
^>ne "look there," and he subordinates the other parts of his 


picture to that feature. He does not fritter away his powers, 
but steadily keeping in view the one purpose which has led 
him to select the subject, he subordinates to it the minor 
details, and, rather than tease the eye with trifling minutiae, he 
passes them over with a sweep of his brush. There is generally 
some passage in most of his water-colours which leaves some- 
thing to be filled up by the mind of the spectator, or something 
is suggested which the mind's eye of the beholder has to create. 
This is a sure charm in painting, and it at once lifts the 
onlooker beyond the commonplace and gives to the imagina- 
tion scope to expand itself. 

Another great merit in De Wint's work is his striking sense 
of the value of line in his compositions ; this contrasts agree- 
ably with his otherwise somewhat impressionist method of 
painting. Moreover, De Wint's colour is always pleasant and 
harmonious, and true to local effect ; though in a few cases his 
colour is sombre and heavy, yet as a rule it is rich and agree- 
able. His light and shade is always felicitously given ; at once 
broad and simple, it yet adds to the vigour and freshness 
of his work by its dexterous arrangement. If his figures are 
at times deficient in drawing, they are always placed so as to 
help the composition, and they invariably add sparkle to the 
effect, while they have about them a rural feeling which atones 
for v/ant of drawing and for indifferent execution. 

Lastly, De Wint is a faithful and devoted lover of real English 
landscape, he admires the varied scenery of our native land 
and depicts it with true affection. Some traces of his Dutch 
origin may perhaps be found in his love of river scenery, 
and of broad masses of sky ; but, take him for all in all, he 
was one of the most truly English of our painters, and, as 
such, his works will always appeal to the sympathies of his 



A Loan Collection of the Works of Peter De Wint was 
exhibited in the Galleries of Messrs. J. & W. Vokins in 
Great Portland Street, in 1884 (the centenary of the artist's 
birth). His grand-daughter, Miss Tatlock, Lady Mary 
Windsor Clive, Mr. G. F. Smith, Lord Windsor, and Mr. 
R. Thorne Waite, were the principal contributors of drawings. 

( 103 ) 


/;/ the Exhibitions of the Society of Painters in Water-Colours. 

1^ u, 

9. Gravesend, Fishing-boat. 
10. Hay Stack, from nature. 64. Eton College, 
loi. View on the Thames, near Chertsey. 
107. Lane near Dulwich. 

118. Hastings Fishing-boats returning on approach 
of a storm. 

121. Westminster Abbey, from Battersea Fields. 

122. Llanberis Lake. 123. Heath Scene. 

144. Corn-field, near Dulwich. 

166. Edinburgh Castle. 167. A Barley-field. 

168. Stacking Hay. 

170. A Lee Shore, coast of Sussex. 

174. Cottage near Windsor, sketch from nature. 

182. The Wrekin, Shropshire. 

191. Westminster Bridge, from Lambeth. 


26. Cottage, near Windsor. 30. Oak Trees. 

136. Sketch from Nature. 137. Twilight. 

138. Westminster Abbey, from Lambeth. 
142. Windsor Castle, from St. Leonard's Hill. 

145. Mid-day. 

146. Llanberis Lake, North Wales. 

174. View on the Thames, below Gravesend. 
193. Millbank, Thames side. 194. Morning. 
241. Snowdon, North Wales. 261. Dulwich Mill. 

264. Beddgelert, North Wales. 


97. Sketch on the Banks of the Thames. 
149. Windmill, Staffordshire. 194. Hastings, Boats. 

265. Cottages, near Hereford. 
275. Cixepstow Castle, River Wye. 
303. Sands at low water, Hastings. 
312. Fish-market, Hastings. 


2. View on Sydenham Common. 
20. Vale of Festiniog, North Wales. 
37. The Thames, near Gravesend. 
210. View on the River Llug, near Hereford. 

I No. 

266. Heath Scene. 

268. Gloucester, from the Ross Road. 
278. Early Morning. 
' 280. Scene on the Beach at Hastings. 
284. Bridge, Beddgelert — Vale of Clwyd — Mountain 
Scene, Llyn Gwynant — Bala Lake. 

295. A Stack Yard. 

302. Three figures — Cottage Child — Fisherman — 
Beggar. 312. Ploughing, a sketch. 

316. Cottage in Kent. 345. Landscape, Morning. 


157. Landscape, a sketch. 

219. Dindor Hill & Rotheros Woods, Herefordshire. 
233. Windmill, a sketch. 

248. View, looking from Dolgelly to Barmouth. 

249. Fish-market on the Beach at Hastings. 

252. Hay-field. 271. Part of Hereford, a sketch. 
284. Cader Idris, from the Machynlleth Road. 
307. Distant View of Goodrich Castle. 
310. Stacking Hay, a sketch. 


4. Coast Scene, Evening. 

7. View in North Wales. 9. Coast Scene. 

10. Haymakers. 
21. Coast Scene, near Hastings. 
27. Ploughing Scene in Herefordshire. 

221. Cottage in Herefordsire. 

222. View in the Pass of Llanberis. 
228. View of Bath, from Beacon Hill. 
232. Sketch from nature. 

257. Scene on the Sands, Hastings. 264. Hay-field. 
275. Llug Meadows, near Hereford. 
27Q. View on the Coast, near Barmouth. 
288. Ross Market-house. 

296. Llanberis Lake, and Snowdon. 

292. Boy Angling, River Llug. 362. Cader Idris. 


33. Water-mill at Festiniog. 

113. Cassar's Tower and part of Leicester Buildings, 
I Kenilworth. 




120. Comb Martin, North Devon. 

131. View on the Beach, near the Old Pier, 


II. View near Pipe, Herefordshire. 

64. Repairing a Vessel, oflf Rotherhithe. 

87. Morning Scene on the Thames, near Graves- 
end. 89. Evening Scene on the Thames. 
96. Scene on the Thames, near Northfleet. 
149. Domestic Ducks. 

163. Town and Castle of Hay, on the River Wye. 

168. View in the Pass of Llanberis. 

169. Hay-field, Gloucestershire. 

170. Distant View of Harlech Castle, Morning. 
173. Scene on the Beach at Hastings. 


15. Boats on the Thames, Morning. 

16. Peter -boat on the Thames, above West- 

minster Bridge. 51*. Heath Scene. 

52. Rocky Scene with Figures. 
110. Hastings — Fishing-boats. 
126. Hawkers crossing the Sands, near Barmouth. 
135. Dockyard — Building a Sloop. 
172. Scene on the Thames below Greenwich. 
177. Scene on the Thames near Rotherhithe. 
184. On the Medway. 195. The Pool of London. 
202. View near Norwood. 
206. Vessels on the Thames. 

234. Embarkation of H.M. George IV., from Green- 
wich, Aug. 10, 1822. 
261. Boats on the Thames. 

265. Boats on the Thames, Evening, Greenwich in 

the distance. 
269. Village of Bullingham, Herefordshire. 

271. Lane Scene, near Hereford. 

272. Fishing-boat on the Thames. 


2. A Hay Cart. 

9. Early Morning on the Thames, Battersea. 
15. Cader Idris from the Barmouth Road. 
19. Fishing-boat on the Thames. 
48. Vessels coming up the Thames. 

65. Shepherds collecting their Flocks. 
112. Interior of Tintern Abbey. 

119. Gravesend Fishing-boats. 

121. Passengers landing at the Stairs, Gravesend. 
129. Vessels on the Thames, by the Custom-House. 
13T. Boats on the Thames, near Gravesend. 

140. Westminster Abbey from Lambeth Palace. 

1^6. Rocks on the River Wye. 

353*. Part of Goodrich Castle, Herefordshire. 

itio. Windmill on a Heath. 

167. Great Malvern Church, a sketch. 

182. Sands at low water, Hastings. 

195. Distant view of Harlech Castle. 

^40. Greenwich from Sydenham Hill. 


248. Vessels at Rotherhithe. 

250. Lynmouth Pier, North Devon. 

294. Lambeth Palace from Millbank. 
296. Cows, Evening. 

298. Hay-field, View near Hereford. 


3. Boats on the Thames, near Battersea. 

73. Distant View of Greenwich. 

75. Llaniltid Vale, North Wales, Morning. 

80. View on the Wye. 
126. Aberystwith Castle, Evening. 
134. Coast Scene, near Barmouth. 
140. Evening. 160. Goodrich Castle. 

171. Cader Idris, from Kymmer Abbey. 
189. Corn-field, Herefordshire. 189. A Sketch. 
206. A Heath Scene. 213. Near Rome. 

214. On the Medway. 

222. Lane near Hereford. 224. Hay-field. 

234. Hay on the River Wye. 242. Evening. 

263. Billingsgate, from the Custom-House Stairs, 

low water. 279. A Sketch. 

288. Battersea Bridge. 291. Clifton, near Bristol. 

295. Gravesend Boats. 297. On the Thames. 
302. Morning. 305. Landscape with Sheep. 

308. Warwick Castle 

332. Hereford, a sketch from nature. 


2. View on the Thames. 7. A Sketch. 

33. Vallis Crucis Abbey. 64. Hay-field. 

73. Coast Scene, with Fishermen. 

94. Moelwyn, near Tan-y-Bwlch, Merionethshire. 

95. Evening. 

III. Distant View of Cardigan Bay. 
113. Boats on Thames, Greenwich in distance. 
120. Snowdon from near Beddgelert. 
122. Westminster Bridge. 
131. Kenilworth Castle, Evening. 
133. The Inn at Talyllyn, North Wales. 
175. View between Hay and Builth, Brecknock- 
shire. 189. London from Heme Hill. 
193. Lynmouth Pier, North Devon. 
204. Snowdon. 231. Lane Scene. 
239. Westminster from Lambeth, Twilight. 
278. Hay-field, Harlech in the distance. 


8. Dover, from the Sea. 22. Hay-field. 

63. Fishermen, Hastings. 

65. Part of Kenilworth Castle. 

72. Canal, Birmingham. 99. Festiniog. 

125. On the Coast, near Towyn, North Wales. 
133. Great Malvern, from the Worcester Road. 
184. London, from Nunhead Hill. 

264. View near Dolgelly. 

293. Shrimp-catchers going out. 

309. Fishermen on the Coast, Hastings. 

315. Corn-field. 324. Scotch Drovers. 


4. Hay-field. 62. View from Kymmer Abbey. 

121. London from Greenwich Park. 

13 1 The Grave. 136. Cader Idris, Evening. 

155. UUeswater, Morning. 167. Welsh Drovers. 
172. A Windmill. 

209. Lynmouth Pier, North Devon. 
212. The Dying Brigand, evening. 

274. A Heath Scene. 

275. On the Beach at Hastings. 
277. Dolgelly, North Wales. 

283. The Aran Mountain, from the Beddgelert 
Road. 289. Chelsea Reach. 

294. Bolton Abbey. 

297. Hastings, Boats returning on the approach of 
a storm. 

310. The Moelwyn, North Wales, misty Morning. 
317. On the Coast, near Towyn. 
325. Scotch Drovers. 

331. Cader Idris, from the Barmouth Road. 

335 Snowdon, Twilight. 

342. Boats on a River, Twilight. 

352. On the banks of the Thames, Battersea. 

355. South side of Cader Idris. 

358. The Aran Mountain, North Wales. 


14. On the Thames below Gravesend. 

122. Fruit and Flower Market at Brussels. 

123. Road Scene with figures. 

137. From Little Malvern Hill. 

138. Pastoral Landscape. 

166. Entrance to Calais Harbour. 

169. Landscape. 180. Shepherds. 

186. Rocks, near Beddgelert. 

199. Vessels oft" Gravesend. 

201. Dutch Hay-boats. 

208. Heath Scene, Afternoon. 210. Gravel-Pit. 
212. Calais Pier. 220. Returning from Market. 
239, Interior of Maentwrog Church, North Wales. 

287. Sand Carriers, Calais. 

288. On the Coast, Boulogne. 

289. Dutch Boats on the Scheldt. 
291. Tintern Abbey. 

296. Fish-market, Boulogne. 
299. Millbank, Thames-side. 

301. On the sands at Hastings. 308. Hay-field. 
309. Vessels on the Thames, below Greenvvich. 

320. Wandsworth Common. 

321. Boats on the Thames, off Greenwich. 

327. Gipsies. 328. Convict Ship, Sheerriess. 

336. Beach at Hastings. 337. Coast Scene. 

344. Gleaners, Afternoon. 372. Coast Scene. 

397. Dover. 


17. Cottages on a Common. 24. Bolton Abbey. 

61. Cader Idris, Morning. 
107. The Severn and the Wye. 
114. Village of Mansel. 


115. Boats on the Thames. 

116. Chelsea Hospital. it7. Shrimpers, Calais. 
125. Shepherds. 126.' Sand Banks, Calais. 
128. East Cliff, Hastings. 

154. London Bridge in 1825. 

163. On the Coast, Buulogne. 

178. In the Garden of the Tuilerles. ' 

187. Shakespeare's Cliff. 

205. Part of the Tuileries at Paris. 

206. Pedmore Church, Worcestershire. 

260. Gleaners. 261. On the Coast of Picardy, 
264. Coast Scene. 

269. Cader Idris from the Barmouth Road. 

287. Evening. 293. On the Thames. 

294. Drovers. 

297. Gleaners Returning, Afternoon. 

301. Goodrich Castle. 303. Vauxhall Bridge. 

313. Ferry House. 319. Coast, Hastings. 

349. On the Lake, Tal-y-llyn, North Wales. 
357. Corn-field. 


6. View on the Wye. 85. Pont Neuf, Paris. 
104. Brigands. 114. Harltch Castle, Evening. 
115. Pont Louis Seize, Paris. 
132. A Sketch in Yorkshire. 
173. Tal-y-llyn Lake, North Wales. 
183. Interior of Halesowen Church. 
197. Winchester Tower, Windsor Castle. 
202. A Saw-pit. 216. Boats, Hastings. 

234. Landscape, with Banditti. 
240. Boats on the Scheldt. 
246. Rue Vivienne, Paris. 

289. Part of Greenwich Hospital. 

290. Door of the Church of St. Roch, Paris. 

298. Lane Scene, near Hereford. 

305. Fort Rouge, Calais. 313. Dieppe Pier. 

316. A Heath Scene. 

325. Harlech Castle, Twilight. 

334. The Arrival. 335. Whitehall. 

337. Calais Pier. 338. Bridge in Warwickshire. 

347. Cottage near Hereford. 

363. Scene in Yorkshire. 

364. Chamber of Deputies, Paris. 

365. Wynd CUff, on the Wye. 

374. Goodrich Castle. 377. Battersea Fields. 

404. Cader Idris. 

419. On the River Ure, Yorkshire. 

427. On the Wharfe, near Bolton Abbey. 


40. Bolton Castle. 47. Antwerp, Morning. 

49. Entrance to Inner Court, Dudley Castle. 

53. A Hay-field. 64. An Interior. 

82. Peat Moor, North Wales. 
138. Heath Scene. 155. Corn-field. 

160. A Rocky Glen. 163. Part of Windsor Castle. 
169. Stacking Hay. 185. June. 

197. Lane in Herefordshire. 
213. Westminster from Vauxhall Bridge. 



231. Hariech Castle. 

.241. Entrance to H addon Hall. 245. Ploughing. 

251. Windermere during the Regatta. 

271. Langdale Pikes, Westmorland. 

275. Westminster Abbey, from Lambeth. 

277. A Rocky Coast, after a storm. 

281. Near Dolgelly. 283. Bedroom at Haddon. 

302. Pier at Dieppe. 

304. Shrimpers on the Coast, Calais. 

323- Bolton Abbey. 

325. Calais Boats off Fort Rouge. 

327. Coast, Boulogne. 

350. Recess in the Drawins-room, Haddon. 

362. Rowsley Bridge, Derbyshire. 

372. Near Harlech, Morning. 

397- Snowdon, North Wales. 

403. The Garden, Haddon. 

4^5- On the Coast, near Barmouth. 


5. Landscape, Showery Day. 
16. Calais Pier. 20. The Causeway, Boulogne 
46. A Brig entering Dieppe Harbour. 
68. The Music Lesson. 70. Landscape. 

87. On the French Coast. 98. The Proposal. 
100. On the Sands, Calais. 

112. Coast near Boulogne. 139. Harlech Castle. 

221. An Old House at Amiens. 

271. Garden Scene. 281. Ploughing. 

288. Bridge near Maentwrog, North Wales. 

298. From Richmond Hill. 

300. Boat on the Thames. 

318. Hay-field. -524. Dieppe, Morning. 

327. Pont-y-Cysylty, Vale of Llangollen. 

329. A Landscape. 

330. Returning from Ploughing. 
335. Funeral of a Nun. 

342. Fort Rouge, Calais, Morning. 

350. Staircase at Haddon Hall. 

359. Boats on the Scheldt. 

361. On the Sands, Boulogne. 

366. Melham Cove, Yorkshire. 

376. Bolton Abbey. 

379. Boats on the Thames. 

389. A Road Scene. 399. Shakespeare's Cliff. 
401. Lane Scene, Herefordshire. 


21. Bridge over the Derwent, near Chatsworth. 

64. On the French Coast. 

71. Lane Scene, Staffordshire. 
120. Rocky Landscape, with figures. 
140. Bolton Abbey. 
142. Distant View of Bolsover. 
154. On the Castle Walls, Harlech. 
162. Snowdon. 181. Landscape, Showery Day. 
214. Part of Kymmer Abbey, North Wales. 
279. A Villa. 281. Barge on the Thames. 


292. On the Coast, near Boulogne. 

302. Cernioge, North Wales. 

304. Lane Scene, Herefordshire. 

315- Penmaenmawr. 317. Heath Scene. 

■326. View near Ambleside. 

328. Road Scene, with figures. 339. Heath Scene. 

349. The Lady of the Manor. 

351. Lac de Gaure, Hautes Pyrenees. 

378. Woody Landscape. 

386. Terrace, with figures. 


6. Ulverstone Sands. 
145. South Downs, Sussex. 
154. Waterfall of Pont-y-Pair, North Wales. 
157. Waiting for the Ferry-boat. 

167. Showery Day, Bolton. 

168. Hope Green, Cheshire. 
191. Returning from Ploughing. 
199. Heath Scene, with figures. 
?52. Lane Scene, Herefordshire. 
253. Lancaster, Morning. 

270. On the Thames, near Gravesend. 

274. A Fresh Breeze. 281. Norwood, Surrey. 

286. On the River Llugwy, North Wales. 

304. Old London Bridge. 

312. Market people crossing the Ulverstone Sands. 
314. Holyhead Road, Nant Frangon. 
325. Bolsover Castle. 


33. Pass of Killiecrahkie. 
100. Stirling Castle, Evening. 
117. Ellerside Peat Moss. 119. Lancaster Sands. 
122. Haddon Hall. 

135. Bridge near Capel Curig. 138. Lane Scene. 

I47. Windmill, near Kenilworth. 

225. Harlech Castle. 

230. Lands<'ape with Fern-cutters. 

233. Market People crossing Lancaster Sands. 

237. Chatsworth Park. 

239. Bolton Castle, Twilight. 243. Heath Scene. 

261. Boats on the Scheldt. 

263. Bridge near Coniston Lake. 

271I Windmill, Morning. 

27s. Waterfall on the Luggy, North Wales. 

281. Landscape. 292. Near Loch Awe. 

293. On the French Coast, Evening. 

296. Lancaster Sands. Morning. 

■306. Road Scene, with figures. 

309. On the Road from Tremadoc to Beddgelert. 

319. Cottages near Bettws-y-Coed. 

324. Criccieth Castle, North Wales. 

326. Evening. 327. Showery day. 

333. Aston Hall. 335. Barden Castle. 

337. Snowdon and Moel Siabod. 

342. On the Road from Sheffield to Baslow. 














Near Harlech. 
Goodrich Castle. 


Cottage on Gill's Heath, Warwickshire. 
Mountain Road, Infantry on their march. 
Landscape, Showery Day. 
Road Scene. 142 
Heath Scene. 152, 
Windsor Castle, Morning. 
Portrait Gallery. 

Market People crossing Lancaster Sands. 
Water-mill, near Dolbenmaen. 
Lane Scene. 

Landscape, Cattle and Drivers. 

Pont-y-Cefn, near Capel Curig. 

Cottage in Surrey. 273. Vallis Crucis Abbey. 

Calais Pier. 302. Lancaster Sands, Evening. 

Windsor Castle. 

Entrance to Calais Harbour. 

Cyssylte Aqueduct. 319. Haddon Hall. 

Showery Day. 327. Windermere Lake. 

Public- House, side of Ulverston Sands. 

Road near Ulverston. 

Kenilworth Castle. 351. Ploughing. 

Corn-field, Mid-day. 
Evening, Gleaners returning. 


Returning from Hawking, Haddon Hall. 
Ulverston Sands. 

Louvre and Tuileries from Pont Neuf. 

Bolton Abbey. 87. Windmill. 

Kenilworth Castle. 

On the Coast near Aberdovey. 

Rocky Scene, Infantry on the march. 

Road Scene, with Gipsies. 

On the Thames, near Gravesend. 

River Scene, North Wales. 

Pier at Ulverston. 

Terrace in the Garden at Powis Castle. 

Near Bolton Park. 167. Gipsies. 

Garden Scene, Powis Castle. 

Dover Pier. 179. Ploughing. 

Landscape, near Woodstock. 

Lancaster Sands, Morning. 

Harlech Castle. 265. Castleton, Derbyshire. 

Powis Castle. 302. Noon, Boys Angling. 

Going to Market. 316. Penmaenmawr. 

Going out Hawking. 

Barden Tower, on the Wharfe. 

Drovers. 336. A Mountain Road. 

Stirling Castle, Cavalry on the march. 


10. Market People crossing Lancaster Sands. 
20. A Farm in Staffordshire. 22. Boys Angling. 
34. Barden, from Bolton Park. 
60. The Town Walls, Conway. 
71. Going to Market. 83. Bolsover Castle. 

94. Cavalry on the march. 
100. View near Windsor. 














303 ■ 



Rocky Scene, with Brigands. 

Cader Idris. 119. A Lane Scene. 

A Hay-field. 156. Evening. 

A Sawpit. 164. A Summer Day. 

On the Thames, Morning. 

On the Holyhead Road. 190. Bala Lake. 

A Hay Cart. 236.* Inverary Castle. 

Battersea Fields. 287. A Mountain Road. 

A Marine Village, Morning. 

A Castle in the Olden Time. 


From the Tremadoc Road. 15. A Brook. 
A Forest. 75.* Boats on the Thames. 

Bay Window in the Portrait Gallery, Hard- 

The Portrait Gallery, Hardwick Hall. 
Throne in the Portrait Gallery, Hardwick Hall. 
A Farm-yard. 123. Mill on the Trent. 

Water-mill in Staffordshire. 
Mountain Road. 154. Rocky Coast. 

Harlech Coast. 218. Coast Scene. 

Pier at Liverpool. 284. A Wood Scene. 

Bolsover Castle. 297. Hardwick Park. 



Market People crossing the Lancaster Sands. 

Road through a Wood, Tan-y-Bwlch. 

On the River Llugwy, North Wales. 

Landscape, Brigands reposing. 

Lancaster Sands, from Hest Bank. 

Vallis Crucis Abbey. 

Windsor Castle from Sandpit Gate. 


Brook Scene. 33. Lancaster. 

The old Holyhead Road. 129. Twilight. 

Distant View of Kenilworth. 
Corn-field, Kenilworth. 

Bolsover Castle. 171. Powis Castle. 

Lane at Harbourne, Staffordshire. 
Bolton Abbey. 263. Going to Plough. 

Heath Scene. 

Gate Tower, Kenilworth Castle. 
Fern Gatherers. 

Breiddyn Hills, from Powis Park. 

Sands at Rhyl. 57. Penmaenmawr. 

Cader Idris. 133. Bolsover Castle. 

Stubble-field with Gleaners. 

River Wnion, North Wales. 

On the Wharre. 199. Sherwood Forest. 

Wharton Hall. 

Lancaster Sands, Morning. 

Harlech Castle. 289. Kenilworth Castle. 

Vale of Conway. 



16. Summons to the Noonday Meal. 
39. Scene in Bolton Park. 

62. Mill near Bromsgrove. 103. Bala Lake. 

141. Merivale. 228. A Mill on the Trent. 

275. Mountain Road, near Harlech. 

280. River Scene, Derbyshire. 288. Powis Park. 
309. On the River Llugwy. 


32. Distant View of l^enilworth Castle. 

59. Gipsies, Early Morning. 

60. Market People crossing the Lancaster Sands. 
69. Distant View of Brough Castle. 

loi. Knaresborough Castle. 112. Cloudy Day. 
132. Garden Terrace, Haddon. 
146. River Wye, near Chepstow. 

209. Mill near Conway. 248. Hampton Court. 
262. Morning. 3:8. Evening. 
335. Cottages in Cheshire. 338. Midday. 


9. Hardwick Hall. 55. Outskirts of a Forest. 
75. Vale of Dolwyddelan. 
87. Mill at Bettws-y-Coed. 

96. The Watering-trough. 

138. Ford over the River Wharfe. 

149. A Brook Scene. 164. A Mountain Spring. 

194. Knaresborough Castle. 

216. Cottages at Beltws-y-Coed. 

218. Near Atherstone, Warwickshire. 

226. Harlech Castle. 275. Corn-field, near Rhyl. 

289. Cottages at Rowley. 


45- River Llugwy. 76. Windsor Park. 

83. George's Dock, Liverpool. 

104. Mill near Llangadoc. 116. Bolton Abbey. 

117. East Clitfs, Hastings. 

122. Caer-Cennen Castle. ' 

^65. Vale of Dolwyddelan. 

186. Cottages at Bettws-y-Coed. 

210. Mill in Staffordshire. 227. Near Atherstone. 
242. Moorland near Kirkby Stephen. 

281. Welsh Scenery. 310. Vale of Clwyd. 


32. Going to the Hay -field. 
45. Green Lane, Staffordshire. 

97. The Skylark. 114. Windy Day. 
129. River Trent. 154. Peace and War. 
206. Sherwood Forest. 

213. Haymaking, Festiniog. 254. Showery Day. 
264. A Gravel Pit. 307. Mountain Stream. 

322. Rowsley, Derbyshire. 341. Holyhead Road. 


27. Barden Tower. 33. The Night Train. 

86. Counting the Flock. 
106. The Missing Flock. 138. Cross Roads. 
158. Beeston Castle. 233. Lane in Surrey. 

256. Going to the Corn-field. 

268. Cottages at Rowley. 278. Near Altringham. 
305. River Leder. 320. Mill, Bettws-y-Coed. 

340. Rainy Day. 

348. From the Mountain above Bettws-y-Coed. 


24. Summer. 35. Changing the Pasture. 

81. Vale of the Conway, Evening. 
133. Beaver Grove, Bettws-y-Coed. 
141. Blackberry-gatherers. 
143. Cottages near Bettws-y-Coed. 
152. The Water Tower, Kenilworth Castle. 
171. The Vale of Conway. 
212. A Welsh Funeral. 

295. River Machno, Pandy Mill, North Wales. 

296. Rocks near Bettws-y-Coed. 

297. Flint Castle. 355. Farm at Bettws-y-Coed. 
366. Near Pandy Mill, North Wales. 


70. Hocky Scene, near Capel Curig. 
102. Going to the Hay-field. 
HI. A Gipsy Encampment. 124. Morning. 
132. Corn-field, Bettws-y-Coed. 
135. Cutting green rye. 
138. Laugharne Castle, South Wales. 
248. Beaiver Grove, Bettws-y-Coed. 
265. Moel Siabod. 269. Sketch near Llanrwst. 


10. Cottages at Harbourne. 
58. Part of Conway Castle. 
129. Bettws-y-Coed Church. 

147. Besom-makers gathering Heath on Carrlngton 

158. On the Llugwy, near Bettws-y-Coed. 
198. Penmaen Bach, on the Coast between Con- 
way and Bangor. 
232. Peat Bog above Bettws-y-Coed. 
252. Lane near Llanrwst. 
264. Gipsies Crossing a Heath. 
284. Mountain Path above Bettws-y-Coed. 
286. Lane near Sale, Cheshire. 
301. On the Coast near Rhyl. 


20. Rainbow. 58. Barden Castle. 

78. Near Bettws-y-Coed. 79. Mountain Rills. 

91. Mountains, Pastoral. 
119. The Summit of a Mountain. 
175. The Challenge. 

222. Old Road from Capei Curig to Bangor. 




238. North-east Point of Great Orme's Head. 

242. Windy Day. 

272. Coast of Rhyl, North Wales. 

292. Lane near Bettws-y-Coed. 

294. Bathers. 


107. Near Capel Curig. 

164. Keep the Left Road. 

254. Snowdon, from near Capel Curig. 

304. Peat Gatherers. 320. Cutting his Stick. 

329. Ludford Bridge. 335. Crossing the Downs. 


31. Skirt of a Wood. 32. Flint Castle. 

57. Snowdon, from Capel Curig. 100. Hay-field. 

106. The coming gale. 

107. Besom-makers carrying Heather. 

108. Crossing the Heath, Moonrise. 

236. Gipsy Encampment. 243. Going to Market. 

248. Heath Scene. 250. The Old London Stage. 

257. Asking the Way. 

286. Church at Bettws-y-Coed. 

294. Near Ludlow. 


128. Driving the Flock. 

140. Peat-gatherers, North Wales. 

143. Near the-Coast. 171. Hay-field. 

179. On the Moors, near Bettws-y-Coed. 

233. Sultry Evening. 234. Twilight. 

240. Wind and rain. 260. North Wales. 

267. Horses drinking. 275. Dover. 



29. Near Capel Curig. 

60. On the LUigwy, Bettws-y-Coed. 

90. Gordal Scar. 117. Carnarvon Castle. 

143. Shrimpers, Hastings. 173. Warwick Castle. 
175. Near Ludlow. 183. Forest Scene. 

207. Near Capel Curig. 
220; On the River Conway. 
226. Near Capel Curig. 
274. Near Capel Curig. 
299. Bolton Abbey, Evening. 
307. Near Rhwy, North Wales. 


15. Snowdon, from Capel Curig. 18. Snowdon. 

25. Near St. Asaph. 117. Kenilworth. 

141. Skirts of a Common. 178. Going to Market. 
196. Near Capel Curig. 278. Coast at Rhyl. 

303. Bettws-y-Coed. 316. Rhyl, on the Sands. 


II. The Stepping-Stones, Bettws. 

24. The Mountain Tarn. 73. The Waterfall. 

84. Darley Churchyard. 

86. Rocks, near Bettws-y-Coed. 
126. Penmaenmawr. 167. Kenilworth Castle. 

274. Twilight. 

7« 1815 1817 Cox did not exhibit. 

In the South Kensington Museum. 


163. Street in Beauvais. 

330. Water-mill near Bettws-y-Coed. 

331. Battersea Fields, from Millbank. 
532. A Forest Scene. 

333. Gateway of Rhuddlan Castle. 

334. The Belated Traveller. 

335. The River Thames and Windsor Castle. 

336. Morning, a Welsh View. 

426. * A Mountain Glen. 

427. Distant View of Windsor. 

428. Distant Hills. 429. Landscape with Bridge. 
512. A Corn-field. 564. Cottage near Norwood. 

1427. The Challenge, a Storm on the Moor. 


1505. On the Lune, Kirkby Lonsdale. 
1523. Windermere. 

1018. Windsor Castle from Sandpit Gate. 

297". Hilly Landscape with figures (unfinished). 

2977. Dover Pier. 3028. Water-mill, N. Wales. 

49. Sketch of a Ruined Castle. 
465. The old Gravel Pits at Moseley, near 

158. A Moorland scene, with Horse and Cart 
and Figures in the foreground ; showery 
effect. 198. A Hay-field. 

74. The Llug Meadows, near Hereford. 
1 1 12. View at Wyndchfie. 


hi the National Gallery. 

Sketch of Harlech Castle, Wales. 

Sketch of a Harbour. 




In the Birmingham Art Gallery. 

Nettlefold Bequest. 

A Herefordshire Village Church, i8i8. 
Fishing-boats at Hastings, '20. 
A Herefordshire Village, '20. 

Shrimpers, '43. Windermere, '44. 

The Skirts of the Forest, 's5-'s6. 

Welsh Shepherds, '40. Flint Castle, '46. 

Tending Sheep, Bettws-y-Coed, '49. 

Battersea, '24. Driving Sheep, '54. 

Lane Scene, Herefordshire, '40. 

Market Gardeners, '50. Cottage Interior, '40. 

Bettws-y-Coed Church 
Waiting for the Ferry, ' 
A Herefordshire Lane, 
Waiting for the Ferry 

Wye), '45. 
Crossing the Sands, '53 
The Missing Lamb, '52, 
Stepping-Stones, '52. 
The Cross Roads, '50. 
Peat Gatherers, '50 
On the Sands, 53. 

I '49. Evening, 
37. In the Hay-field, 
'43- Driving Cattle, 
(Hunscom's Ferry on 
Sheep Shearing, 
The Farmstead, 
Bolton Abbey, 
Changing Pastures, 
Kilgarran Castle, 
Rhyl Sands, 
Going to the Hay-field, 




Fifty-seven other oil-paintings by David Cox from private Collections were exhibited in the 
Btrrmngham Art Gallery in November and December, 1890. 


In the Exhibitio7is of the Society of Painters in Water-Colours. 

M 1813. 


43. A Landscape. 52. Stacking Hay. 

110. Ploughing. 119. Scene in Vorkshire. 

147. Scene in Buckinghamshire. 


24. A Village Church. 
160. Moor Game Shooting. 
190. Bolton Wood, Yorkshire. 
192. Cookham, Berks. 
284. Taplow from Maidenhead Bridge. 
289. Harewood Castle, Yorkshire. 


130. A Bridge in Derbyshire. 
208. Distant View of Lincoln. 
212. Windmill, near Lincoln. 
266. A Cricket Match. 

293. Entrance to a Village in Nottinghamshire. 
302. Landscape. 310. Cottages in Somersetshire. 
325. A Windmill. 


221. Landscape with Cattle. 265. A Landscape. 
279. Jervaux Abbey, Yorkshire. 
349. Greenwich (for Cooke's work of "Thames 
Scenery "). 



14. Distant view of Ulleswater, Cumberland. 

58. Patterdale, Westmoreland. 

97. View from the Churchyard at Ncwnham, 

106. Neath Abbey, with the Copper Works, 

117. Pennarth Castle, Glamorganshire. 
153. Distant View of Derwentwater. 
211. Stacking Barley. 
228. Hastings, from the East Cliff. 
271. Briton Ferry, Glamorganshire. 


238. View of Lancaster. 


6. View in Silverdale, Lancashire 
12. Hay-field, June. 
106. View in the Isle of Wight. 
140. Windmills, near Lincoln. 
144. Corn-field, Westmoreland. 
161. Dacre Castle, Cumberland. 
164. Scarborough Castle. 
241. Kenilworth Castle. 
323. The Keep of Cardiff Castle 
340. Windmill, with a distant Corn-field. 

43. Lincoln. 

194. Landscape. 
257. Hay-fidd. 










Distant View of Goodrich Castle. 

Distant View of Lynn. 52. Hay-field. 

View on the Wye. 

A Rainbow, View in Norfolk. 

View on the Coast of Glamorganshire. 

A Corn-field. 

View on the Brathy, Ambleside. 

Evening. 183. Dunstanborough Castle. 

View in Lancashire, near Levens. 


12. Over Bridge, near Gloucester. 

95.* A Barley-field, Norfolk. 147. Elijah. 

154. A Corn-field, Lincolnshire. 172. Rouen. 

191. View on the Essex Coast. 

211. Caerphilly Castle. 

359. Lime Kilns, Westmoreland. 
363. Tending Cows, Normandy. 


12. Dieppe Castle. 

22. View of Lincoln from the Brayford. 
39. Mowing. 

50. Corn-field in Silverdale, Westmoreland. 
65. Lincoln, from the Banks. 
86. A November Morning, 
go. Corn-field, with Distant View of Lincoln. 
108. Fecamp, Normandy. 

110. Covendale, Yorkshire. 129. Twilight. 

149. Travelling Gipsies, View of Bolsover Castle. 

220. View in the Grounds at Bolton. 

257. Landscape with Cattle. 

290. View of Morecambe Bay. 

306. Penrith Castle. 

311. View in Glen-Coe, Westmoreland. 

361. Castle Rising, from Babingly, Norfolk.' 


8. View near Ludlow. 21. Ludlow Castle. 

41. Nant-y-Bellaw, Wynnstay. 
50. Cottages in Caernarvonshire. 58. Lincoln. 
93. A Rainbow. 108. A Water-mill. 

152. Summer. 188. View on the Thames. 

212. Conway. 222. A Barley-field. 
256. Distant View of the Forest Hall Mountains, 

319. A Windmill. 411. Ripon. 


57. Corn-field, Lincoln in the distance. 

63. A Gipsy Camp. 103. Penrhyn Castle. 

121. Loading Hay. 125. Water-mill near Bangor. 
152. Castle Rising. 174. Wynnstay. 

203. Norwich. 218. View on the Thames. 

262. View in Norfolk. 395. View in Cumberland. 

No. . . 1833. 

22. View in Westmoreland. 

38. Corn-field, Huntingdonshire. 49. A Common. 
54. View in the Grounds of Wentworth Castle. 
89. Distant View of Crowland Abbey. 

J03. A Village in Lincolnshire. 

153. View above Wilton Park, Yorkshire. 

163. View near Beddgelert. 

178. Landscape, with Cattle. 

184. A Pastoral scene. 187. Dale Park, Sussex. 
206. Scarborough. 224. Whitby. 

225. A Glen in Westmoreland. 308. A Waterfall. 


9. Bolton near the Sands, Lincolnshire. 

29. Whitehaven. 35. Castle Rismg. 

56. Review at Wilderness Park, 1832. 

68. Lowther Church. 
126. Mask Mill, Yorkshire. 
132. Village of Skirwith, Cumberland. 
146. Boats at Lincoln. 
165. Holkar Sands, Lancashire. 
175. A Castle in South Wales. 
188. Askham Bridge and Mill, Westmoreland. 

258. Distant View of Black Combe. 


20. Crowland Abbey. 

33. River Scene, Lincoln. 

44. View of Scaw Fell. 80. A Villaee. 

87. Village in Norfolk. v"iage. 
124. Askham on the River Lowther. 
134. Lowther Church. 
142. Nether Levens, Westmoreland. 

178. Carisbrooke. 

224. The Vale of Newlands, near Keswick. 

231. Twilight. 255. Egremont Castle. 

259. View on the Holmes, near Lincoln. 

267. Lane at Kilburn, Hampstead in the distance. 


II. Dolbaddern and the Lake of Llanberis. 
25. Ferry at Carnarvon. 

28. Corn-field at Church Hyckham, Lincolnshire. 

34. Village in Lincolnshire. 

39. Dolwyddellan Castle. 53. A Cornfield. 
62. Water-Mill at Beddgelert. 

71. Stacking Hay. 90. Lincoln. 

103. Distant View of Lowther Castle. 
124. View on the River Lochy, North Britain. 
160. Ashstead Forest, with Gipsies. 

179. Eagle Tower of Caernarvon Castle. 
248. View on the Thames, near Henley. 
266. View near Keswick. 


7. A River Scene. 
41. View of Lincoln. 
48. Hoar frost. Castle Rising. 

26. Hay-field. 




60. Washingborough, Lincolnshire. 

77. View in Wales. 

82. The Thames, near Twickenham. 

97. The Thames, near Kingston. 

108. Snow Storm at Castle Rising, October 29, 
1836. 200. A Cottage Scene. 

256. Summer View on the Thames. 
304. Distant View of Kirkby Lonsdale. 
313. Twilight, Felpham, Sussex. 
346. Autumn, Scene in Norfolk. 


6. Gladstone House, Yorkshire. 
38. A Cottage Scene. 58. Lincoln. 

90. View on the Lowther, with cattle in the water. 

98. View on the Lowiher. in. Beverley. 
151. Distant View ofRedcar. 

269. View on the Beach at Redcar. 
303. A Lane Scene. 

342. View of the Haweswater Mountains, from 

Lowther Castle. 
346. View on the Thames, near Putney. 


9. View of the Ennerdale Mountains. 
31. Rural Scene, with Cattle in water. 
41. Timber-waggon crossing a Ford. 
72. View on the Ribblc. 

80. View in Wales between Penhill and Bangor. 

88. Hay-field. no. Lowther. 

175. Richmond Hill, from Twickenham Ferry. 
182. A Fen Mill, Peterborough in the distance. 
291. Loading Corn. 


78. Autumn, View in the High Park at Lowther.' 
118. Knaresborough Castle. 

161. Distant View of Dover Cast'e. 
185. Green Hills Farm, Matlock. 
226. Matlock High Tor. 
231. Connington Castle. 

317. Stormy effect on the Cross Fells, Cumberland. 

I. Scene from "As Vou Like It." 

3. Ferry on the Severn. 
93. Ingthorpe Grange, near Skipton. 
95. Knaresborough. 

no. An effect on the Cross Fells, Cumberland. 

A Barley Field. 
165. Study of an Oak Tree at Oakley Park. 
175. West front of Lincoln Cathedral. 
212. A Gipsy Tent. 

238. View from Knipe Scar, Westmoreland. 

344. Knaresborough. 

'254. View from Conishead Priory. 

280. View on the Kiver, Kent. 

15. Scene from Thomson's "Winter." 

39. Minehead, Somerset. 

49. View on the River Lowther. 

57. Goodrich Castle, 
log. A Windmill in the Fens. 
134. View near Pangbourne. 
156. View m Leven's Park. 
161. View from the Warren at Minehead. 
169. Snow Scene. 170. Gloucester. 

177. Scene at Badger, Shropshire. 
181. Watermill at AUerford. 
239. A Corn-field, Windsor In the distance. 
286. Scene in Westmoreland. 
293. Cottage Scene, Worcestershire. 
302. Market-place at Dunster. 
314. Mill at Maple, Durham. 


12. A Village in Westmoreland. 

58. A Lane Scene. 86. View on the Severn. 

102. Whitby. 113. An Oat-field, Lincolnshire. 
122. Cattle fording the Derwent. 
139. Smugglers, Early Morning. 
203. Twilight. 205. Tewkesbury. 

210. View in Long Sled-Dale. 

219. Beverstone Castle. 225. Ventnor Cove. 

255. Newark Castle. 261. Vallis Crucis Abbey. 
264. Harlech. 352. Pier at Minehead. 


3. A Salmon Leap at Lynmouth. 

21. View near Salt Hill. 

48. Abbey Mill, Christchurch, Hants. 

56. A Landscape. 59. Winter Scene at Badger. 

68. A Brook. 83. Corn-field, Derbyshire. 

88. Waterfall in the Dingle, at Badger, Shrop- 
shire. 91. Kenilworth Castle. 
104. Dunster, Somerset. 117. Shap Abbey. 
132. Morning View in Cumberland. 
212. Distant View of the Clee Hill, Shropshire. 
221. Kirkstall Abbey. 
239. A Dog-kennel at Connington. 
245. A Village near Cheltenham. 


4. Stacking Hay. 29. Village in Norfolk. 

32. Distant View of Kenilworth. 

50. Christchurch, Hants. 82. Ancaster. 

88. Village in Cumberland, 
joo. Village Scene during Harvest, 
in. View in Nottinghamshire. 
J24. Bolton Abbey. 213. Folding Sheep. 

242. A Fair. 

307. Distant View of Kenilworth Castle. 













Canterbury. 53. View in Ireland. 

Matlock, High Tor. 84. Bolton Abbey. 

Dover from the Road to Canterbury. 

A Water-mill. 143. Harrow. 

Bolton Abbey and Rectory. 

Rural Scene, with Horses. 

Honey Lane Green, Essex. 

View on Hampstead Heath. 

Village in Lincolnshire. 

View in Powis Park. 256. Stacking Hay. 
An Oat-field. 317. Corn-field in Lancashire. 


12. Water-mill near Corwen. 

46. Richmond, Yorkshire. 64. A Corn-field. 

106. Matlock Village. 119. A Water-Mill. 

270. Kenilworth Castle. 

299. Corn-field, near Iffley, Oxon. 

300. Distant view of the Clee Hills. 
307. Stacking Hay. 




I ';3. 


Landscape with Cattle. 

Hay-field near Waltham Abbey. 

Saltwood Castle. 28. Nottingham. 

Lympne-Castle, Kent. 89. Berkhamstead. 

Kenilworth Castle, iig. Walton-on-Thames. 

Vale of Dolwyddellan. 

Near Egremont. 147. Lincoln. 

A Corn-field, Lincolnshire. 
View in Epping Forest. 

A Water-Mill. 290. A Hay-field. 

A Barley-field near Dunster. 
Stainton Beck, Lincolnshire. 


34. Windsor. 

24. Matlock, High Tor. 

38. View on the Ri%er Dart. 
124. Aldbury, Herefordshire. 
139. View of Lincoln, from below the Lock. 
178. Bray on the Thames. 236. Stacking Barley. 
260. Hay-field on the River Witham. 
294. Wilsford, Lincolnshire. 326. Kirkstall Abbey. 

I>i 1816, 1S17, 1819 to 1824, De Wint did noi exhibit. 

Ill the National Gallery. 

Henderson Bequest. 
Knaresborough Castle. 

View near Oxford. 3. Lincoln Cathedral. 

Roman Canal, Lincolnshire. 

Kenilworth Castle. 6. Bray, on the Thames. 

Corn-field, Ivinghoe, Buckinghamshire. 

A Road in Yorkshire. 

Harvest-time, Lancashire. 

Cottage and Harvesters. 

Bray, on the Thames, from the towing-path. 

Burning Weeds ; a Sketch. 






A Warwickshire Lane. 

The Trent near ISurton. 

View of Tours, France. 

Bridge over a branch of the Wythara. 

On the Eden, Cumberland. 

Distant View of Nottingham. 

Hay-field, Yorkshire. 

Westmoreland Hills. 

Ruins of Lincoln Castle. 

A Corn-field ; a Sketch. 

London, from Greenwich Park. 

In the South Kensington Museum. 


328. Landscape with Cattle. 

329. Thornbury Castle, Gloucestershire. 
476. The Stonebow, a Gateway at Lincoln. 

515. The Cricketers. 516. 

517. Walton-on-Thames. 

563. The Hay Harvest. 1480. Land cape. 

586. Landscape, with Waggon and Cattle. 

262. A Mountain Tarn. 

263. Ferry of the Severn, near Tewkesbury. 

264. Haddon Hall. 

265. Shap Fells, Westmoreland. 

266. Wilsford, Lincolnshire. 

267. Rick-making, near Lincoln. 


268. Reapers in a Corn-field, near Lincoln. 

269. Tutbury Castle. 

270. View near Salt Hill, Bucks. 

271. Corn-field with loaded Waggons, near 
Lincoln. 272. Stacking Hay, near Lincoln. 

273. Church on the Bank of a Winding River. 

1019. Water-Mill, Cumberland. 

1020. Village in Lincolnshire. 

1021. Lincoln Cathedral. 

1022. A Snow Drift. 

3050. Torksey Castle, on the Trent, Lincolnshire. 

3051. Cowes Castle. 628. Landscape with Church. 
1099. River Scene. 





14. View of Gore Lane, with Holy Tiinity 

Church, Brompton. 

15. View from Gore Lane, with St. Luke's 

Church, Chelsea. 


439. Courtyard of Haddon Hall, Derbyshire. 
io8ii. Landscape, with Bridge, Windmill, and 
Cattle. II95- Beverley, Yorkshire. 

1201. Corn-field with Harvesters. 


In the South Kensinglon Musetun. 


258. A Corn-field. 

259. Landscape, with Lightning playing, and a 

Hermit entering his Cave. 

260. Haymaking. 


261. Wooded Landscape, with Water, and a 

Horseman attended by Dogs. 
1036. Black Gang Chine, Isle of Wight. 


While this work was in the press, but too late to be induded 
in its proper place, I received the following letter from the 
Rev. Alfred J. Capel, which is too characteristic of David 
Cox to be omitted. 

G. R. R. ^ 

St. John's Mount, Hereford, 

November 27, 1890. 

Dear Sir, 

From the catalogue of the Birmingham Collection of 
David Cox's paintings, I learn you are about to publish a life 
of that great artist. It has occurred to me, therefore, that 
any authentic story told of him by those who enjoyed the 
privilege and the pleasure of his acquaintance during his resi- 
dence in the city of Hereford from 18 14 to 1827, may be 
of some special interest to you. If, however, I am mistaken 
in this opinion, I must trust to your kindness to pardon the 
liberty I am taking in addressing you, a perfect stranger to me. 

It appears that David Cox had two particular friends and 
companions here. One, the late Dr. S. S. Wesley, then 
organist of Hereford Cathedral, and perhaps the greatest 
composer of Church music that England has ever produced ; 
and the other, Mr. Edward Smith, a very talented young 
artist, a native of Hereford, and also a musician of no mean 
ability. Respecting this friendship, I heard from Mr. Smith 
himself, who after an absence of very many years returned to 
Hereford, and died here a short time since at the advanced 
age of eighty-six or eighty-seven. He informed me that Dr. 
Wesley and he were frequently invited to David Cox's house 



to partake of a plain and homely dinner, the other members 
of the party being Mrs. Cox and little David their son, a 
Hereford Cathedral schoolboy. The repast itself did not last 
very long, hnt immediately after dinner Mr. Cox and his boy, 
with the two friends, retired to the studio, when the last 
published number of the Waverley Novels — then just coming 
out — was at once produced, eagerly placed in young David's 
hands, and as soon as the guests were comfortably seated and 
the father had lighted his cigar and prepared brushes, paints, 
&c., for work, the boy was bidden to read aloud. That three 
such men should revel in, admire, and thoroughly appreciate 
Sir Walter Scott is not to be wondered at, and it was with the 
greatest delight that Mr. Edward Smith recalled to memory 
these happy meetings. At the end of each chapter their 
practice was to discuss what had been read — one pointing out 
this beauty in the writing, another that, and so forth — David 
Cox all the while painting away most assiduously. He was 
constantly at work, said Mr. Smith, at his favourite pursuit, and 
never cared to be idle. This was evidently due to his great 
love of the Art, since, as is well known, his only certain income 
in these days came from his engagement as drawing-master 
at Miss Croucher's Gate House School, at the Hereford 
Cathedral School, and from lessons given to a few private 
pupils. Amongst the latter was a daughter of the Rev. Dr. 
Taylor, headmaster of the Grammar School. This lady is 
still living, and is the fortunate possessor of several of her 
distinguished master's paintings. Hereford and the neigh- 
bourhood, it seems, afforded plenty of beautiful subjects for 
David Cox's canvas, but whether it was that the inhabitants 
generally failed to appreciate his talents, or had not the means 
of purchasing his works, we do not know ; certain it is, how- 
ever, that a few only of his pictures are to be found in the 
cathedral city or neighbourhood, and that he determined, 



after a residence of thirteen years, to shift his quarters and try 
his fortunes elsewhere. So disheartened does he appear to 
have been with his own want of success in Hereford, that he 
gave the following piece of advice to his friend Edward Smith, 
who was desirous to start for himself either as a painter or 
musician : " If you make up your mind to follow my profession 
— and there is no reason why you should not succeed in it — let 
me only recommend you to go east, to go west, to go north, 
to go south, but never to think of settling in the ancient city 
of Hereford." Mr. Smith left Hereford, gave up painting, and 
became the very efficient organist of a parish church. 

Among the few genuine works by David Cox now to be 
found in Hereford, and painted during his residence in the 
city^ are the following : — 

This and the two following belonged formerly to Mrs. Johnson 
[iiee Miss Taylor) and were given to her, like the others be- 
longing to this lady, by David Cox on his leaving Hereford. 

"Welsh Peasants returning frcm Market" {an un- 
finished sketch) Rev. A. J. Capel. 

"Old Bridge, with women washing" [a pencil 

drmving) Rev. A. J. Capel. 

Three Sketches {purchased from the late Mrs. 

Bainham) . Mr. F. Meyrick. 

Four beautiful landscapes representing the Seasons. \The Misses Wil- 
" I -lug Meadows" ..... ./ Hams. 


" A View from Wye Bridge, Hereford 
" Interior of a Welsh Church" 

" Cows cooling themselves in a lake " 
Several small sketches 

"The old Butcher's Row, Hereford" 
" Newark Castle " 

Mrs. Johnson. 
Mrs. Johnson. 
Mrs. Johnson. 
Mrs. Johnson. 
Mrs. Cane. 

Rev. A. J. Capel. 

Yours very truly, 

Alfred J. Capel, 
Vicar of St. John Baptist, Hereford. 

Gilbert Redgrave, Esq. 

I N D E X. 

*^* The names of drawings and paintings are given in italics. 

Artists' Benevolent Fund, 48 
' Art Journal,' engravings in the, 20 
' Art Union of London,' engravings 
published by the, 20, 39 

Barber, Charles, 11 
Barber, Joseph V., 6 
Bell-Fletcher, Dr., 45 
Bellin, Samuel, Cox's portrait en- 
graved by, 44 
Bettws-y-Coed, 34, 38 
Birch, Mr. Charles, 44 
Birmingham, 4, 13, 21, 53 
Boxall, Sir William, 45 
Brompton Church, 86 

Cox, David — 
Birth (1783), 4 
Delicate health, 5 
First school, 5 
Apprenticeship, 6 
Employed in the Birmingham 

Theatre, 6 
Arrival in London (1804), 9 
Relinquishes scene-painting, 10 
First sketching tour, 1 1 
His marriage (1808), 12 

Residence at Dulwich, 13 
Birth of a son, 13 
Gives lessons in drawing, 13 
Visit to Hastings, 13 
Elected Member of the Water- 
Colour Society (1813), 16 
Becomes teacher at the Military 

Academy, 17 
Removes to Hereford (1814), 18 
Publishes ' Treatise on Land- 
scape Painting,' 1:9 
Visits to the Continent, 21, 23, 24 
Life at Kennington (1827), 22 
Visits to Yorkshire, 24, 31 
- — — to the Lake Countiy, 25 
Takes lessons in oil-painting, 29 
Takes Greenfield House at Har- 

borne (1841), 30 
Visits to Bettws-y-Coed, 34, 39 
Death of Mrs. Cox, 36 
Journey to Edinburgh, 43 
His portrait, by Sir J. W. Gor- 
don, 44 
Illness and death (1859), 46 
His will, 47 

Window to his memory, 47 
Special exhibitions of works, 48 



Capel, Rev. A. J., letter from, 115 

Challenge, the, 52 

Changing Pastures, 55 

Chelsea Chiaxh, 86 

Conversazione Society at Hamp- 

stead, 48 
Cornfield, a. By De Wint, 77 
Cottage and Harvesters, 85 
Cox, Joseph, 4 

Cricketers, the. By De Wint, 72, 
73> 83, 87 

De Maria, Mons., 7, 8 
Deritend, near Birmingham, 4 

De Wint, Peter — 

His ancestry, 60, 61 
Birth at Stone (1784), 62 
First evidences of genius, 63 
Apprenticed to John Raphael 

Smith (1802), 63 
First meets William Hilton, 64 
Visits to Lincoln, 68 
Admitted Student of the Royal 

Academy, 69 
Made Associate of the Society 

of Painters in Water-Colours 

(1809) , 70 

His marriage to Harriet Hilton 

(1810) , 71 

Visits to Normandy, 72 

various English counties, 73 

Stays at Castle Rising and Hun- 
stanton, 74 
Paints oil pictures, 77, 78 
Method and materials used by 

him in water-colour work, 79 
Residence in Percy Street, 89 
Removes to Upper Gower St., 90 
Sojourn in W'ales, 92 

Visit to Matlock, 92 
Death of Hilton (1839), 92 
Marriage of De Wint's daughter 

to Mr. Tatlock (1844), 97 
Death of De Wint (1849), 98 
Burial in the churchyard of the 

vSavoy Chapel, 98 
Sale of his drawings at Christie's, 


Exhibition of his works at 
Vokins's Gallery, 102 

Ellison, Mr. Richard, 75 
Exhibition of 1862, 49 

at Liverpool, 48 

at Manchester, 48 

at Birmingham, 56 

Fieldler, Cox apprenticed to, 6 
Friends at Birmingham, 27, 39 

Going to the Ilayfield, 34, 53 
Gordon, Sir J. Watson, 43, 44 
Green Lane, the, 41 

Had don Hall, 87 

Hall, Mr. William, 4, 28, 37, 39, 42 
Hay Harvest, 87 
Hay field, the, 51 

Hilton, William, 64, 68, 70, 90, 92 
Hollins, Peter, 47 

Lincoln Cathedral from the Castle 

Moat, 85 
Linwood, Miss, 67 
Liverpool Art Club, 48 
Lbig Meadows, the, 51 

Macready, the elder, 6, 8, 9 
Manchester Exhibition, 31, 39, 48 



Mary anointing the feet of Christ. 

By Hilton, 93, 99 
Morland, George, 64 
Mother and Child, 93 
Muller, William, 29 

Nettlefold, Joseph H., 45, 53, 54 
Nottingham, 80, 87 

Old Water-Colour Society, 81 

On the Yare, 83 

Orrock, Mr. James, 52, 53 

Falser, the printseller, 12 

Print Room, British Museum, 53 

Prout, Samuel, 12 

Ragg, Mary, 12 

A'aising of Lazarus. By Hilton, 99 
Richmond Hill, 88 
Rogers, of Stafford, 62 
Royal Academy, 66, 69, 76, 89, 90 
Royal Dublin Society, 82 
Royal Oak, the, at Bettws-y-Coed, 
34, 37 

Roscoe's ' Wanderings and Excur- 
sions in North Wales,' 19 
Ruins of Lincoln Castle, 85 

Showery Effect, 51 

Shrimpers, the, 55 

Smith, John Raphael, 63, 65 

Society of Painters in Oil and 

Water-Colours, 17 
Society of Painters in Water-Colours, 

14, 23, 26, 29, 70 
Solly, Mr. Neal, 3, 6, 14, 19, 23, 42 
Stone, Staffordshire, 62 

Tatlock, Miss, 75, 78, 93 

Mrs., 77, 97 

Tayler, Mr. F., 47 
Topham, Mr., 39 

Ulverston Sands, 52 

View of Windsor Castle, 1 5 

Walford, Frances, 5 
Watson, Miss Caroline, 61 
Welsh Funeral, the, 38 
Westmorland Hills, 85 
Woody Landscape, 78 

' Young Artist's Companion or 
Drawing Book,' 19 


Bioarapbiea of tbe (Breat artists* 

Each volume contains many illustrations, inchiding; when possible, a Portrait oj tJie 
Master, and is strongly bound hi decorated cloth. Crown 8vo, 3J. 6d. per 
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twelve other Paintings, Engravings and Woodcuts. 

Little Masters of Germany. By W. B. Scott, Altdorfer, Hans Sebald 

Beham, Bartel Beham, Aldegrever, Pencz, Binck and Brosamer. Illustrated with Engravings 
of the Emperor Charles V., by Bartel Beham — The Madonna of the Crescent Moon, by 
Aldegrever — Sophonisba, by Pencz — and several examples of Decorative Ornament, &c. 

Hans Holbein. By Joseph Cundall. Illustrated with Engravings of the 

Meyer Madonna — Archbishop Warham — The Family of Sir Thomas More — Hubert Morett — 
Henry VIII. — and Examples of the Woodcuts in the Praise of Folly — The Dance of Death — 
The Bible Cuts, &c. 

Overbeck. By J. Beavington Atkinson. Comprising his Early Years in 

Lubeck, Studies at Vienna and Settlement at Rome. Illustrated with Engravings of Christ 
Blessing Little Children — Christ Bearing the Cross — The Entombment — The Holy Family 
with the Lamb, &c. 


Rembrandt. By J. W. Mollett, B.A. Illustrated with Engravings of the 

Lesson on Anatomy — the Descent from the Cross — Saskia — The Night Watch — Burgomaster 
Six — The Three Trees — and other celebrated Paintings and Etchings. 

Rubens. By C. W. Kett, M.A. Illustrated with Engravings from Rubens 

and Isabella Brandt — The Descent from the Cross — Rubens' Two Sons — Henri IV. and Marie 
de Medicis — The Chateau de Steen — The Chapeau de Poil — and ten other Paintings. 

Van Dyck and Hals. By P. R. Head, B.A. Illustrated with Engravings 

of the Syndic Meerstraten — Ecce Homo — Charles I. and the Marquis of Hamilton — Henrietta 
Maria, with Princes Charles and James, &c., by Van Dyck ; and Hals and Lisbeth Reyners — 
The Banquet of Arquebusiers — A Cavalier, &c., by Hals. 

Figure Painters of Holland. By Lord Ronald Gower, F.S.A. Illustrated 

with Engravings of Paternal Advice, by Terborch — The Hunchback Fiddler, by Adrian van 
Ostade — Inn Stable, by Wouwerman — Dancing Dog, by Steen — Vegetable INIarket, by Metzu 
— Dutch Family, by Ver Meer, &c. 

Landscape Painters of Holland. By Frank Cundall. With thirty Illus- 
trations of Works by Ruisdael, Hobbema, Cuijp and Potter — and a Catalogue of their principal 
Paintings and Etchings. 

Watteau. By J. W. Mollett, B.A. Illustrated with Engravings of Fetes 
Galantes, Portraits, Studies from the Life, Pastoral Subjects, and Designs for Ornament. 
Price 2S. 6d. 

Claude le Lorrain. By O. J. Dullea. Illustrated with lEngravings of 
Crossing the Ford — An Italian Harbour at Sunset — A Seaport — The Campo Vaccino — and 
many others from his celebrated " Liber Veritatis." 

"Vernet and Delaroche. By J. Ruuxz Rees. Illustrated with Engravings of 

the Trumpeter's Horse — The Death of Poniatowski — The Battle of Fontenoy, and five others, 
by Vernet; and Richelieu with Cinque Mars and De Thou — Death of the Due de Guise — 
Charles I. and Cromwell's Soldiers — and a large Engraving of the Hemicycle of the Palais des 
Beaux-Arts, by Delaroche. 

Meissonier. By J. W. Mollett, B.A. Illustrated with Engravings from the 
Chess Players — La Rixe — The Halt — The Reader — The Flemish Smoker — and examples of 
M. Meissonier's Book Illustrations. Price 2S. 6d. 

Painters of Barbizon, I. Millet, Rousseau and Diaz. By J. W. Mollett, 

B.A. Illustrated with Engravings from the Gleaners, The Spinner, The Angelus, &c., by 
Millet — The Flood, The Pool in the Forest of Fontainebleau, by Rousseau — Forest Scene and 
the Bathers, by Diaz — and by Portraits of the Artists. 

Painters of Barbizon, II. Corot, Daubigny and Dupre. By J. W. Mollett, 

B.A. Illustrated with Engravings from a Storm on the Sandhills, The Pond at Ville d'Avray, 
The Banks of the Stream, and Dance of Nymphs, by Corot — Spring Time, a Landscape, 
Flock of Geese, by Daubigny — and the Setting Sun, The Pool, and The Punt, by Dupre. 

St. Dunstan's House, Fetter Lane.